tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN July 19, 2011 1:00pm-5:00pm EDT
hearings, without within testimony, and allowing amendments from republicans or democrats. a bill of this magnitude with such far-reaching consequences for our democracy itself should be treated more seriously than this. the concept of enshrining a particular percentage of public expenditures as a percentage of g.n.p. is contrary to the concept of a democratic republic which congress is elected by the people of this country to govern this country. for these reasons and others, i strongly urge a no vote on the rule and the bill. and i yield back the balance of my time. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: mr. speaker, at this time i'm pleased to yield three minutes to a gentleman who held a very persuasive special orders on this topic last night, the gentleman from arizona, mr. franks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arizona is recognized for three minutes. mr. franks: i certainly thank the gentleman. mr. speaker, all financial budgets will eventually balance. no individual, no family, no
business and no government can indefinitely continue to spend more money than they take in without someone having to make up the difference. mr. speaker, that includes the federal budget of the united states. neath plr obama nor congressional democrats can repeal the laws of mathematics. the federal budget of the united states government will eventually balance. the question is whether the white house and those of us in this body will balance this budget ourselves by wise policy or national bankruptcy and financial ruin will do it for us. on the day barack obama walked into the white house his breathtakingly arrogant policies have absolutely ignored economic and financial reality. it took america the first 216 years of its existence to accumulate the debt that barack obama has accumulated in the short 2 1/2-year span of his presidency. he rammed a nearly $1 trillion government takeover of health care down the throats of the american people. and he spent another nearly $1 trillion on a failed
government-based boondoggle for economic stimulus. during the short time in office, he has increased our federal debt by nearly $4 trillion in new debt. and now he says we will have -- now he says we will have $1 trillion-plus deficits for years to come. then when speak of the effort to reduce the deficit, the president has the hubris to tell conservative republicans to take a balanced approach and to eat our peas. and to that i would just say to the president, please pull up a chair, sir, we are ready to eat our peas and we need help. this cut, cap and balance bill is actually a solution to america's problem. it does not cut social security, it does not cut medicare, it does not cut compensation to our men and women in uniform by one dime. but the balanced budget amendment it proposes does give us an honest chance of reforming and saving this program and our
country from bankruptcy in the future. mr. speaker, this is not the democrat congress of last year that gave a standing ovation to a $2 trillion increase in our debt limit. this is the congress that was sent here by the american people to turn things around. and the american people are awake, mr. speaker, and they are watching us ad and they are tired of democrats telling them -- us and they are tired of democrats telling them that two plus two equals 13 and they're not willing to give the american people this chance by helping republicans pass a balanced budget amendment in this congress, the resulting consequences will be theirs alone and i believe the people will hold them accountable. by passing this cut, cap and balance bill along with the balanced budget amendment we can restore confidence in the american economy, in markets here and across the world. we can see more revenue come into these coffers than has ever happened in the history of this nation and we can set this country onto the road of the
brightest days it has ever seen. it is truly an opportunity beyond our dreams and this is the time to do it. and by the grace of god, that's exactly what we intend to do. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, let's be clear. under the republican plan they will cut social security and medicare by $6,000 per senior citizen. talk about a tax increase. at this point i'd like to yield one minute to the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from texas is recognized for one minute. ms. jackson lee: i thank the gentleman very much and i'm just overwhelmed with the words breathtakingly ignorant policies. i'm literally shocked and let me tell you why. when you want to understand my republican friends, why we're in
the position we're in, what about the 37.5% of the debt being the bush-era tax cuts? tax cuts on which this bill and any of your negotiations don't in any way suggest revenue. which the american people understand. arrogant policies by the president? the recovery and reinvestment was only 5.2%, creating three million jobs. let me say that again. three million jobs. the economic downturn came about with the iraq war and others. so today, my friends come on the floor of the house with the cut, cap and balance. as member of the judiciary committee, let me suggest to you that the amendments that were put in the bill have destroyed any sense of balance to the balanced budget amendment. but -- can i -- mr. mcgovern: i yield an additional one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for an additional one minute. ms. jackson lee: i thank the
gentleman. i have a new name for the bill. tap dance around the question of revenue and lifting the debt ceiling, done 60-plus times over america's lifetime with reagan, carter, president bush and president bush and clinton. so it's the tap dance, loser's club, the losers are seniors and young people and those who need social security and those who are disabled. and then finally instead of balanced budget amendment it is the bust the benefits of those who are in need. the young people who are looking forward to a new attitude and opportunity in this nation. what do we need? not the cut, cap and balance which in no way invests in america, it no way ends the loopholes that are prevailing, it will block the united states congress from closing loopholes of those who make billions of dollars every three months. we need innovation, infrastructure and education. that's jobs. parents, i don't want to see your children's opportunity by
closing elementary and high schools and disallowing them from going to college, that is what this bill is. not to cut, not to cap, not to balance. it's the tap dance, loser's club and bust the benefits of the american people. let me suggest to you -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. ms. jackson lee: these are the losers, these are the losers of this bill. don't allow these people to lose in the american dream. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: there's only one bill in this congress that abolishes every single corporate loophole in the entire united states tax code. that's h.r. 25, the fair tax act. i would welcome the gentlelady on that bill because i too share a desire to see those lool loopholes eliminated -- those loopholes eliminated. if i had the time i would. i must now yield to a co-sponsor of the fair tax, a gentleman who has co-sponsored legislation in this house. mr. gingrey. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for how long?
mr. woodall: i'm sorry, mr. speaker, two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: two minutes, the gentleman from georgia is recognized. mr. gingrey: i thank the gentleman for yielding and i rise in strong support of this bill and rule, cut, cap and balance. the gentlelady from texas just stood up and said she would call it the tap dance bill. quite frankly what the president has in mind i would refer to as the whistling past the graveyard plan. this cut, cap and balance approach to this problem is just that. and the first provision of cutting spending, mr. speaker, of $111 billion, $35 billion of that by the way from mandatory spending, but not one dime, not one dime from social security or medicare. we protect our seniors. but this spending problem, i mean, it is just like the problem in this country with drunk driving. are we going to solve that problem by raising the blood
alcohol level? absolutely not. and are we going to solve this problem of runaway spending by just simply raising the debt ceiling without these caveats of cut, cap and balance? absolutely not. that's why we have to do this, to rein in this spending and to bring it down at historical levels of 20% of g.d.p. and then the final part of cut, cap and balance, mr. speaker, is the balance part. the president is asking for a balanced approach, that's exactly what this is. this is the balanced approach that makes sense. because every other pledge in the past in regard to reining in spending, whether we're talking about pay as you go, the democrats like to tout that plan, but it never has worked because we don't abide by these pledges. we continue to spend. the only way to make sure that future congresses rein in this
spending on a permanent level is to have a balanced budget amendment that calls for a supermajority to raise taxes. 49 out of 50 states have a balanced budget amendment. why in the world wouldn't democrats join with republicans in calling for a balanced budget amendment? and to think that the president would issue a statement of administrative policy in opposition to this is absolutely ridiculous. support this commonsense bill. stand strong for our country. this is the land of the free. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. gingrey: but it has to be the land of the strong before it can become the land of the free and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i yield myself 10 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mcgovern: i just want to say to the gentleman from georgia, the reason why the president issued a veto threat is because he doesn't want you to destroy social security and medicare. two of the most important social programs in this country that benefit millions and millions of senior citizens. i don't have the time.
at this time i yield two minutes to the gentlewoman from california, ms. matsui. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from california is recognized for two minutes. ms. matsui: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i rise in strong opposition to this rule and the extreme ideological bill before us today. the cut, cap and balance act or as it should be more appropriately called, the cut, cap and end medicare act, is one of the most radical bills to come before this body. but perhaps i should not be surprised. i've already seen the majority of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle vote to end medicare, slash medicaid and now they want to cut social security benefits too. instead of listening to the american people, the house republican leadership continues to advocate for the elimination of medicare, all while continuing to protect tax loopholes and subsidies for big oil and wall street executives. this bill's actually more extreme than the republican budget passed in april calling
for deeper cuts and more hardships for the middle class and older americans. in fact, this bill does nothing to create jobs, nor invest in the roads, bridges, clean energy technology and job training that would really get our economy moving. in short, h.r. 2560 will stifle growth, hurt middle class families and undercut america's seniors. in my district there are over 93,000 social security beneficiaries and over 85,000 medicare enrollees. on behalf of my constituents and for future generations i stand in strong opposition to this bill and the rule. i know that there are those on the other side of the aisle who want to support a reasonable plan to reduce the deficit. this is not the plan. i urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to reject this dangerous proposal and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: mr. speaker, at
this time i'm pleased to yield two minutes to my friend, mr. pence. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. pence: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. thank you, mr. speaker, and i thank the gentleman for yielding. i rise as a co-sponsor and urge strong support of my colleagues for the cut, cap and balance act, h.r. 2560. you know, i really believe if you owe debts, pay debts. we must find a way to honor the full faith and credit of the united states of america but even more important than that we must find a way to restore the faith and confidence of the american people and the world community and fiscal -- in the fiscal integrity of the united states of america. that is our challenge. after years of runaway federal spending by both political parties, after failed economic policies by this administration we find ourselves at a place of unprecedented fiscal crisis.
more than a $14 trillion national debt, $1.65 trillion deficit. we now borrow more than 40 cents of every dollar that we spend here in washington, d.c. the cut, cap and balance act applies commonsense principles and fiscal discipline to the challenges of spending restraint today but it also introduces a new element and that is a balanced budget amendment to the constitution. yes, we cut spending by $111 billion next year, about $5.8 trillion over 10, yes, we cap federal spending to back under 20% of g.d.p. but i think the time has come to make any increase in the debt ceiling contingent on sending a balanced budget amendment to the states and here's why. washington, d.c., is not only broke, it's broken. let me say again. after more than a decade here, seeing my party in power in congress and in the white house, seeing another party in power in congress and the white house, i am convinced that washington,
d.c., is not only broke, it's broken. and the american people know in their heart of hearts there's something missing in the equation. and it's the guardrails in the constitution of the united states of america. it is the guardrails that say it must be the objective of the congress and of this and of future administrations to live within our means. 31 states have a balanced budget requirement in their constitution, indiana has a prohibition on incurring debt. 49 states require balanced budgets. the time has come to cut, the time has come to cap spending. the time has come to make any increase in the debt ceiling contingent on sending a balanced budget amendment to the constitution, to the states for ratification and this we must do. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i yield 30 seconds to the gentleman from illinois. mr. jackson: i wanted to ask the distinguished gentleman from
indiana a question with my 30 seconds if he would be willing. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois is recognized for 30 seconds. mr. jackson: as i understand it, under your balanced budget amendment, in the event that congress is unable to achieve a balanced budget, a lawsuit could be filed forcing the federal judiciary into the budget process. in effect, your balanced budget amendment would reverse the constitutional relationship by legalizing the legislature and politicizing the judiciary, is that your expectation that a federal judge could ultimately have the final say over budget matters in the house? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. mcgovern: i yield the gentleman 10 seconds. mr. pence: it would be my expectation that would not yield constitutionality exclusively through the judiciary. throughout history it has mostly settled there. mr. jackson: reclaiming my
time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. jackson: the sole interpret of the constitution is through the federal courts. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks recognition? the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: thank you, mr. speaker. at this time i'm pleased to yield two minutes to the gentleman from texas, mr. culberson. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for two minutes. mr. culberson: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. culberson: the house is honoring a pledge we made to america and the largest landslide election when the america people elected a new majority to govern the house, to take america down the path to a balanced budget, to restore prosperity, to restore jobs that had been lost under this president. the american people spoke decisively last november and asked this new constitutional conservative majority in the house to cut spending, to cap spending, to enact a balanced budget amendment to the
constitution, to shrink the size of the government, to get the government out of our lives, out of our pockets, and put us on a path to prosperity. this legislation does. i'm proud to be a co-author of the cut, cap and balance, the balanced budget amendment to the constitution which has worked so well in texas. texas is a beacon to other states. we have demonstrated in texas when you live within your means, when you cut taxes, when you limit litigation and regulation, when you get the government off our backs that american ingenuity, american entrepreneurship will thrive and the economy will grow. people have been moving to texas. we in this new constitutional conservative majority in the house are doing today what we promised america we would do last november. we are cutting. we're enacting, we're reaffirming the ryan budget which does not affect anyone over the age of 55 that's un affected by the ryan budget. if we do nothing, if you are
under the age of 55, you will be affected. medicare is on the path to bankruptcy as is social security. we are working to put america back on a path to prosperity, to grow jobs, to get the government back within the bounds of the constitution with a balanced budget amendment. i'm very proud today, mr. speaker, to be here in support of this legislation. honor the promise we made to america. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. chairman, i yield one minute to the gentleman from california, a member of the budget committee, mr. honda. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. hondhond thank you, mr. speaker. i rise -- mr. honda: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today in opposition to this cut, cap and balance proposal. from the deficit commission to the biden commission to direct talks to the president, the republican place politics above responsibly solving the country's budget problem. this is the first budget
reduction plan in the past quarter of a century that protects programs from the most vulnerable. the duck, dodge and dismantle act will hurt medicare, medicaid, unemployment insurance, child nutrition, the supplemental nutrition program, women, infants and children, planned parenthood, supplemental income for the elderly, public schools and teachers and pay for firefighters and cops. also, that the republican protect tax breaks and tax subsidies for the wealthy and powerful by erecting a constitutionial barrier to any measure that would raise any revenue. this bill is as extreme as it is unprecedented. it is not a serious responsible good faith negotiation on the republicans. i ask the republicans to stop the games, quit the posturing and do the responsible thing for the american people. i ask colleagues to reject this bill. the speaker pro tempore: the
gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from louisiana, dr. boustany. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. boustany: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding time to me. our country is at a pivotal point in its history. economists will call this an infelix point. for those that is not an economist it's a critical time. it's a pivotal point. we have to decide, are we going to compete in the 21st century and see this country prosper and lead in the 21st century or we -- will we sink in a sea of read ink? i think we need to move forward with a bold plan. we haven't seen anything from the president. he hasn't put anything on the table. we are coming forward with a plan that's credible. it lays out a path, a credible path that gets us back to fiscal sanity. $46,000 for every man, woman and child is what the debt stands at today. that does not include the unfunded liabilities going to the future which takes us well
north of that figure. we have a lot of work to do. it's time for this congress to get serious about its responsibility, its responsibility to bring fiscal sanity and fiscal balance back. we have a spending problem. there's clearly a spending problem. but if you look at the two fundamental problems facing the country it's our unsustainable debt but it's also the lack of economic growth to create private sector jobs. now, if you take the path our friends wants to take they are going to raise taxes across the board and what you're going to see is worsening economic -- worsening economic situation. we're not going to see the kind of job growth. we could walk ourself back in a recession. our bill has a strategy and moves forward with a trade policy. you'll see a competitive america. you'll see job growth in this
country. we have to get spending under control. today is the day we can cast that vote. today is the day we can restore american competitiveness. we're going to restore american credibility. and we're going to restore american confidence. and with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i say to the gentleman from louisiana, we can't compete without investment and innovation and infrastructure and education. and the bill that my republican friends have brought before us today on the floor would devastate this economy. it would absolutely devastate the american economy. at this point i yield two minutes to the gentleman from new york, mr. serrano. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for two minutes. mr. serrano: i ask neaks to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. serrano: i thank the gentleman. i rise today to speak against this rule and this bill. this will not save our nation's problem but instead devastate our economy in the most vulnerable -- and the most vulnerable in our society. our nation has run into fiscal problems for three runs none
addressed by this bill. bush tax cuts, foreign wars and a recession. when a fiscal situation of the government was better i warned that the spending and tax cuts and foreign wars would cause problems between republicans which will balance on the backs of social programs. when times were good, republicans said that tax cuts pay for themselves and famously deficits don't matter. they were wrong and working families are suffering. now we get the explanation that by cutting government jobs and spending it will create jobs and revive the economy. however, it is clear that what we really need are good, stable jobs and stimulus in order for the economy to grow again. my constituents never got the benefit of the bush bubble. they worked the jobs that were available and paid their taxes. now the jobs have evaporated and the social safety net they paid into is under severe threat. i will vote against this bill on behalf of my constituents and the people like them across
this nation. i will be casting a vote for fairness and economic growth against the bush policies that the republicans are seeking to extend and for a better future for our children. our nation became great by making vefments in our people and infrastructure -- investments in our people and infrastructure and by creating a stable middle cast and a robust social safety net. it became great for republicans paying their fair share of the taxes. today we watch as the republicans continue to turn their backs on that history and continue their push towards a me first economic system. i don't want no part of that bleak future. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: i yield myself 15 seconds to say that competing vision of trillions more in stimulus and more in government jobs and more in government spending is one idea how to revive this economy. it's just not one that i share. i'd like to yield at this time
two minutes to the gentleman from alabama who i don't believe shares that opinion, the gentleman, mr. brooks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. brooks: thank you, mr. speaker. back home in my district, one of the things i'm understanding in communicating with people is the difficulty in their difference of understanding in millions in debt, blts in debt and trillions in debt. i heard an analogy the other day that will help the american people better understand the financial situation of the united states of america. imagine that you're a pamly and you haven't been keeping track of your finances for a while. finally you decide to sit down at your kitchen table, the two spouses get together and they accumulate their income, they accumulate their expenses, they accumulate their debt. and as they go through their income they discover they have about $50,000 that they can spend, that's their income, for the upcoming year. and then they look at their expenses and put all the bills together and how they spent over the past year and discover that last year they spent $80,000. many of them spent $30,000 more
than their income. and then finally they pick up their visa card bill and that visa card bill is $320,000. those are the exact same ratios that we are talking about with the united states government and the debt that we face. we got a budget that is around $3.5 trillion. we have an income that's a little over $2 trillion. and we have a deficit that's $14.3 trillion. all of that is unsustainable. it's a fble house of cards and we have to take a tough but reasonable course and that's why cut, cap and balance is all about. cut, cap and balance. that is the way to restore financial security for the united states of america and that is the way to create jobs. mr. mcgovern: will the gentleman yield? mr. brooks: mr. speaker, i yield the remainder of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i yield three minutes to the gentlewoman from connecticut,
ms. delauro. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from connecticut is recognized for three minutes. ms. delauro: i rise in strong opposition to this rule and the legislation before us today. if we do not act in two weeks, the united states will for the first time in history default on its debt. with the economy in the vulnerable position right now, we should be working to create jobs instead of acting responsibly and in a bipartisan way to raise the debt ceiling, the republican majority has decided to make this a form of hostage taking to press their agenda. congress has always paid for its past financial commitment. with republican majorities agreeing on raising the debt ceiling seven times during the bush administration. everyone understands a long-term challenge posed by budget deficits and president obama and democrats supported a balanced approach to addressing that challenge. yes, the ideological and extreme bill before us today
does not address the number one concern of the american public, jobs, but rather seeks to implement an agenda that will in fact destroy jobs and the social safety net, end medicare and reduces the social security benefits our seniors have earned and deserved. rather than making investments to create jobs, economic growth, the republican majority is proposing cuts which will lead to a loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs, even as we are mired in unacceptably high unemployment. with this bill, the republicans choose to put in place a spending cap that will cement in law the republican budget that chooses to end medicare, places the burden of deficit reduction on the backs of middle class and the most vulnerable. and finally, the republican majority is choosing to hold an i shall crease in the debt ceiling hostage to an approval of an amendment that will make it impossible to raise revenue. what do i mean? it will make it impossible to
end the subsidies to big oil, make it impossible to close the loopholes that allow corporations to ship their jobs overseas or abuse tax haven that allows them to pay almost nothing in federal taxes. to achieve deficit reduction, they will end medicare, implement deep cuts to social security and other programs that is critical to the middle class. instead, what they need to do is to go after the 12 largest corporations in this nation that citizens for tax justice had said that those corporations pay a negative 1.5% tax on $171 billion in profits and about $64 billion in tax subsidies. you want to do something to balance the budget and make deal with deficit reduction, go after those corporations that are paying zero in taxes. instead of going after middle-class americans or seniors who rely on medicare
and who rely on social security, mr. speaker, this republican agenda undermines america as a country where middle-class american families have an opportunity for a decent retirement. oppose this outrageous piece of legislation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from georgia. >> would the gentleman from georgia yield to a question? mr. woodall: i don't have the time. >> sure you do. this wouldn't be taking up your time. mr. woodall: the answer is no. at this time i would like to yield, however, mr. speaker, to a colleague who is a great leader on this issue, the gentlelady from tennessee, mrs. blackburn. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from tennessee is recognized for how long? mr. woodall: two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: two minutes. mrs. blackburn: thank you, mr. chairman. this is quite an interesting debate that we're having and i think it is a historic day. it is a time when we have the
opportunity to do something about the out-of-control, reckless washington spending. it's long overdue. and i had an email from a constituent a few minutes ago, they're watching the debate. and i would offer to my colleagues, i think lots of americans are watching this debate. they're waiting to see if we have the courage, if we have the political will to actually do something about spending money we don't have for programs our constituents don't want. amazingly my constituent could not believe that there are people who would actually come to this floor and say that they opposed cutting what the federal government spends. because we're borrowing 40 cents of every dollar that is spent. they were amazed that people would oppose placing a cap over what that government can spend and they were quite amazed that
they would actually stand and oppose a balanced budget amendment. something that is long overdue for our country. you know, this problem has been years, decades in the making. i think we all agree with that. but i also think there's one thing that we will all agree with, the past three years has seen such a rapid rate of accelerated spending that it has added $3.4 trillion, this administration has added $3.4 trillion to our debt. unprecedented. and indeed included in that was the passage of the president's health care bill, obamacare, which sent another $1.2 trillion, and by the way to my colleagues, you all made the choice in the decision in that bill to cut $575 billion out of medicare. i just remind you of that. the time has come for fiscal
responsibility. it is time to pass cut, cap and balance. i encourage my colleagues to support the rule and to support the bill and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, before i yield to the gentleman from massachusetts, i just would like to respond to the gentlelady from tennessee when she talks about the need for political will. what we need is the political will to stand up to big oil and to end subsidies that amount to corporate welfare. the bill that my republican colleagues are bringing to the floor today let's them off the -- lets them off the hook and goes after the poor and the most vulnerable and our senior citizens. that's why this bill is so outrageous, because it's so unfair. at this time, mr. speaker, i'd like to yield two minutes to the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. markey. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts is recognized for two minutes. mr. markey: thank you. i thank my friend from massachusetts. americans today are getting an upclose view of republicans' misguided plans, misplaced
priorities and massive assault on the middle class. it's not, as they call it, cap, cut and balance, it's really a cash cow for billionaires. the republicans are pushing grandma and middle class families overboard while protecting the superrich and the powerful -- super rich and the powerful. will republicans protect grandma's medicare and social security checks? no. grandma is being pushed overboard. what about programs that help low income children visit their doctor? no. they are getting pushed overboard. what about programs that ensure that veterans' benefits are paid on time? no. that -- veterans are being pushed overboard. but the massive bush tax cuts
for the wealthy, the tax subsidies for big oil, they're too precious to republicans -- they're too precious, the republicans say. they have to be kept onboard so billionaires will not see their undeserved tax breaks taken away. the oil industry will not see their unjustified tax subsidies as consumers are tipped upside down at gas stations taken away from them. no. those subsidies, they have to be kept onboard. and, ladies and gentlemen, that's not fair. that's not balanced. grandma, kids, veterans, they should not have to contribute to balancing the budget but billionaires and big oil are exempted by the republicans. this is the face of their party. big oil and billionaires. that's who they are protecting. they have deficit attention
disorder. if there was such a thing as a nobel prize in economics and -- they would be the first winners of it. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: mr. speaker, at this time i'm pleased to yield two minutes to mr. kingston. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for two minutes. mr. kingston: i thank the gentleman. after a three-year spending spree in which the president drove up the national debt by 56%, the president has the nerve to tell the american people that they have to eat their peas. this from a president who has had the federal government on a super size me diet since the day he was sworn in. maria antoinette would be proud of such arrogance. one must ask, where has the president been? he owns this economy, it's his policies that have left 15 million americans without work, it's his policies that have
stifled business growth and investment, it's his policies that have given us more deficit spending than any other administration in history. the president talks about entitlement reform but offers no plan, no legislation. the president talks about his budget fairness and yet this very budget was rejected by the harry reid senate democrats by a vote of 97-0. the president denounces the bush tax cuts. yet personally extended them a few months ago. in 2006 the president voted against increases in the debt ceiling, citing a lack of leadership. now he offers none. but today the house republicans will lead with a plan. that plan is cut, cap and balance. and on the back we have the president's plan. this is it.
speeches. that's what we get after three years and the largest deficit in history from the president of the united states. speeches and admonishments. mr. jackson: will the gentleman yield? mr. kingston: i'll be glad. mr. jackson: thank you. is it the gentleman's opinion that under the republican cut, cap and balance -- mr. kingston: reclaim my time, you got to go fast, i'm willing to answer your question but -- mr. jackson: is the gentleman willing to turn the balancing act of this program over to the federal judiciary? mr. kingston: the president has backed up against the wall. if we don't -- mr. jackson: is the gentleman prepared to turn the balancing aspect over to the federal judiciary? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. kingston: to have balanced budget amendment so that congress' hands will be tied from increasing the deficit. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. kingston: i yield back to my friend. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: at this time i'd like to yield two minutes to the gentlewoman from maryland, ms. edwards.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from maryland is recognized for two minutes. ms. edwards: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in opposition to the rule and the underlying bill. for months our colleagues on the other side have known of the feed to avoid a default crisis and meet our nation's obligations but instead today they move with lightning speed to the floor, a sham bill that's nothing more than a way to score political points at a time that we need, the markets need and the world need seriousness. it's time to meet our obligations for seniors, retirees and veterans. for social security and medicare and to create jobs and grow this economy. those on the other side of the aisle know that the bill that's on the floor today would do nothing like that. the underlying bill would in fact reap catastrophic consequence for our nation's economy and our nation's most vulnerable communities and that's the truth. what kind of majority wants to throw our economy into another tailspin by having us default on our obligations? i'm going to tell you. it's the irresponsible kind. they've been unrelenting in
their quest to eliminate medicare and cut social security and this bill is no different. the american public needs to understand what's at stake here. it's the default on our nation's obligations that will throw out of whack social security, medicare benefits, veterans benefits, everything that we know in this economy because of the foolishness that's going on here in this chamber. and with that i would ask us to yield and i ask my colleagues to please be responsible, protect our spew fur -- future, protect our children's future, invest in our roads and our bridges and our infrastructure, create jobs but please stop this foolishness. and with that i would yield and i would ask for a no vote on the bill and a no on the underlying rule. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: mr. speaker, i reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i yield one minute to the
gentleman from illinois, mr. jackson. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois is recognized for one minute. mr. jackson: thank you. i'm going to try to speak as quickly as i possibly can. under the balanced budget amendment, the sole responsibility for interpreting the constitution of the united states is the federal court system, a federal judge. and i wanted to ask the chairman if he'd join me in an answer to the question, what would qualify a federal judge to cut a federal program? what would qualify them? would we take into a process in the senate asking them what programs they support? are we politicizing the judiciary? mr. woodall: there's nothing different from thised a amendment than any other amendment in the constitution that relies on the -- mr. jackson: the congress of the united states making a judgment about programs and then answering to the people in an elective political process, we are shifting the responsibility to a federal judge to make a cut in a program. is that correct? mr. woodall: that is not correct. the responsibility lie here's, as my colleague knows. but as is true with every word in the constitution -- mr. jackson: reclaiming my time. the responsibility for interpreting the constitution is a federal judge. under a balanced budget amendment, a federal judge would be responsible for cutting these
proom programs is that correct? mr. woodall: if the gentleman would yield, i have the sponsor of the legislation right here to answer that very question. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i have no more speakers on this side. so i will -- the gentleman has additional speakers i'll let him -- mr. woodall: i don't although i do have the resolution sponsor here to answer any questions you all might have. mr. mcgovern: he didn't answer any of them last night. i'm not sure we'll get many answers today. let me yield a minute to the gentleman from florida. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida voiced for how long? mr. mcgovern: one minute. the speaker pro tempore: one minute. mr. hastings: i will not take a minute. i will ask the sponsor of the bill like i did last night in the rules committee, do you genuinely believe that this particular measure is going to become the law?
>> if the gentleman will yield, i genuinely hope this does become the law. mr. hastings: reclaiming my time. i heard the word that you hope. let me tell you what i told you last night. i bet you cash money that it ain't going to become the law. mr. chaffetz: if the gentleman will yield. mr. hastings: i yield. mr. chaffetz: the gentleman yields his time. i don't take cash bets but you also talked about bouncing. the only thing that's going to bounce is the government's checks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mr. chaffetz: sorry. i thought he yielded to me. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: i reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman continues to reserve his time. mr. mcgovern: i'm the final speaker. mr. woodall: i'm prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i yield myself the remaining time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, once again i stand in strong opposition to this closed rule and to the underlying bill. it's time for a grownup moment, mr. speaker. it's time for the members of the house, republican and democrat,
to come together to address the looming crisis over the debt limit. we are exactly two weeks, two weeks away from the possibility of the united states defaulting on its obligations of not paying its bills. this is not an acceptable outcome. i know that there are some on the other side of the aisle, in fact i talked to one just this morning who will not vote nor figure that raises the debt ceiling. that's unfortunate. default would result in collapsing markets and skyrocketing interest rates. it would deal a devastating blow to the full faith and credit of the united states, it would throw even more americans out of work. the bill before us does nothing, nothing to prevent that outcome. slashing medicare and social security while protecting tax cuts for the wealthy is not a responsible shution. i think the american people have made it clear in poll after poll after poll. they have said to my republican colleagues, keep your hands off the medicare and off of social security.
what my republican colleagues are trying to do with legislation is lower the standard of living for our senior citizens. they deserve a hell of a lot better. the fact of the matter is that senior citizens deserve better from this congress. they should not have to pay to balance this budget because it's not -- they did not cause this economic crisis. and it's just simply unfair to protect all this corporate welfare, all these tax loopholes to protect corporations with jets and protect corporations that have to pay taxes and they can incorporate overseas in bermuda or the cayman islands. i mean, it's just wrong. it is wrong to continue these subsidies to big oil that have billions and billions of dollars. why aren't they paying their fair share? mr. speaker, it's just wrong to radcally alter the constitution of the united states of america
-- radically alter the constitution of the united states of america. we need to focus on jobs plus infrastructure plus education equals jobs. we have to invest as well as cut. this bill will slash the investments we need to put people back to work and to grow our economy. it cuts pell grants. it will cut education at every level. it will cut money for roads and bridges. it will cut money that will help this economy grow that can help put more people back to work so we can start reducing the debt in a responsible way. mr. speaker, at the end of this debate, i will ask the house to defeat the previous question. i will after an amendment that will ensure that this -- i will offer an amendment that will ensure that this bill does not impede job creation and economic growth. so a vote in favor is to hurt our economic recovery. given the fact you have given us a closed rule i don't think it's hard to ask to put
language in here that will protect jobs and the american worker. i ask unanimous consent to insert the text of the amendment in the record along with extraneous materials immediately prior to the vote on the previous question. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. mcgovern: i urge my colleagues to vote no on the previous question, reject this closed rule that is unfair and reject the underlying legislation. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from georgia. mr. woodall: i thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. woodall: mr. speaker, it was 224 years ago that the constitutional convention was wrapping up, that summer in 1787. ben franklin walked out of the front door and a woman asked him, what did you create? and he famously responded, a republic, if you can keep it. that's what the debate is about here today, mr. speaker, our republic and can we keep it.
mr. speaker, the last time we debated a balanced budget amendment was back in 1995, 16 years ago, and at that time now -minority leader steny hoyer said this, this country confronts a critical threat based on the continuation of large annual deficits. i'm absolutely convinced that the long-term consequences of refusing to come to grips with the necessity to balance our budget will be catastrophic. and those who will pay the highest price for our fiscal responsibility should we fail will be those least able to protect themselves and the children of today and the generations of tomorrow. mr. speaker, this debate is about those who are least able to protect themselves, and this is about the vision we have chosen for ourselves as americans. 223 years ago, mr. speaker, in a letter written in november, thomas jefferson said this.
i wish it were possible to obtain a single amendment to our constitution. i would be willing to depend on that alone for the reduction of the administration of our government to the genuine principles of its constitution. i mean an additional article taking from government the power of borrowing. our founding fathers 223 years ago. folks talk about a bill being brought to the floor. this has been going on since the founding of our nation. since the founding of our nation, and we had this discussion in 1995 and 1994. every congress for the 10 years between 1985 and 1995 we discussed a balanced budget amendment, mr. speaker. apparently there was no need to discuss it longer. look where we are. i was down in chinatown, mr.
speaker. our united states debt auctions in chinatown. we sold it at 0.00005% interest. but hear this. i close as i hope, mr. speaker. from our friends at s&p, we view an inability to timely agree and creditably implement medium-term fiscal policy and inconsistent with the a.a.a. sovereign rating. mr. speaker, this isn't about raising the debt limit. this is about preserving the republic. go ahead and raise the debt limit. moody's says that's not enough. go ahead and raise the debt limit. s&p says that will not get you anywhere. inconsistent with a a.a.a. rating is the borrowing and spending that this congress has brought to the house. now, we talk about rushing a bill to the house floor, mr. speaker. i say this and some of my colleagues said it and i associate myself with their
comments. this reflects the priorities of this house. what we're working on today is exactly what we were working on when we worked on h.r. 1 in february, one of the most open and brilliant moments in this house's history in terms of debate where the parties were setting -- priorities, the same priorities when we had the same budget debate earlier, where we said, what can we agree on as a house? you know what we agreed on, mr. speaker? we agreed on the priorities that are set forth in cut, cap and balance. now, there's been a lot of talk about who's willing to compromise. mr. speaker, i can't find a single colleague on this side of the aisle that's enthusiastic about raising the debt limit. there is not one. but folks are willing to do it so we can preserve the debt for our children and grandchildren which we can do with cut, cap and balance. mr. speaker, there's all this talk in washington about default on the national debt. that's a serious conversation,
a serious conversation. i want to talk about defaulting on the promises of our founders. i want to talk about defaulting on our republic, mr. speaker. one wish thomas jefferson had, one wish, if it were possible to obtain a single amendment to our constitution it would be an additional article taking from government the power of borrowing. i understand, mr. speaker, that there's a lot of reluctance to do that. there's lots of great things that folks have priorities that they want to spend on. these are not about the spending priorities. h.r. 1 was about those priorities. our budget discussion was about our priorities. today, it's about the future of our republic. you need read no further, mr. speaker, than the credit rating agencies telling us that august 2 is not the date we have to fear. today is the day we have to fear because if we fail to pass this bill, our republic stands
in peril. mr. speaker, i rise in strong support for this rule. i'm grateful to the budget committee for bringing forward this resolution, and i ask for a unanimous vote of support as this resolution comes to the floor. with that i yield back the balance of my time and i -- pardon me lr i move the previous question on the resolution. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on ordering the previous question on the resolution. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, on that i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, andrew. -- the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. pursuant to clause 9 of rule 20, the chair will reduce to five minutes on any vote on adoption. this is a pifment vote. -- this is a 15--minute vote.
-- this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
the speaker: the house will be in order. the house will be in order. the house will be in order. the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication. the clerk: the honorable the speaker, house of representatives, sir, i have the honor to transmit herewith a facsimile copy of a letter received from mr. jacob corbin of the elections division of
the california secretary of state's office indicating that according to the unofficial returns of the special election held july 12, 2011, the honorable janice hahn was elected representative to congress for the 36th congressional district, state of california. with best wishes i am. signed sincerely, karen l. haas. the speaker: the house will be in order. we will not proceed until the house is in order. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that the gentlewoman from california, the honorable janice hahn, be permitted to take the oath of office today, her certificate of election has not arrived but there is no contest and no question's been
raised with regard to her election. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. will representative-elect hahn and the members of the california delegation present themselves in the will of the house? -- well of the house? and will all members rise and if the representative-elect -- the representative-elect can raise her right hand? do you solemnly swear or affirm that you will support and defend the constitution of the united states against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that you will bear true faith and allegiance to the same, that you take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, that you faithfully discharge the duties on which you are about to enter so help you god?
ms. hahn: i do. the speaker: congratulations. you are now a member of the 112th congress. the speaker: without objection, the gentleman from california is recognized for one minute. mr. stark: thank you, mr. speaker. the residents of california's 36th district chose janice hahn last week in the special
election. and you are esteemed colleague to succeed our esteemed colleague, jane harman. jane will be missed but we welcome janice to congress where she will undoubtedly serve as a powerful champion for her constituents. she begins her career with a strong record of fighting for jobs, environment and working families as a city of los angeles council woman. she led successful initiative to improve her community, created jobs by standing with unions and advocating for development to promote tourism. she learned -- she worked -- she learned to clean the air -- she worked to clean the air in l.a. by addressing the ports pollution and the strong diesel truck emission standards. she stood with working families through her support of living wages and health care. she carries on the legacy of
her father, kenny hahn, a former los angeles county supervisor and passionate civil rights advocate. as united states congressman, janice will surely add more victories to her already long list of accomplishments. she's joined today by her son, danny, daughter, katy, son-in-law john, and three grandchildren, brooklyn, mckenna. please joining me and all the california delegation in welcoming janice.
the speaker: if the gentlelady could suspend momentarily and without objection the gentleman from california, mr. dreier, is recognized for one minute. mr. dreier: i am going to ask my colleague california, mr. stark, to yield to me. would the gentleman yield to me? mr. stark: i'd be happy to yield. mr. dreier: i'd join with my republican colleagues across california and across the country in extending harty congratulations to our colleague, filling the great shoes -- they are not huge shoes, of course, but succeeding our good friend, jane harman, and i have to say, mr. speaker, that janice hahn comes from a family that has had a great, great, long tenure in public service. her father, kenneth hahn, served as a supervisor in the county of los angeles. a huge job. they represent about three times as many people as we, mr. speaker. her brother, of course, judge
judd, has served as the mayor of the city of los angeles. i have to say that our new colleague has come here at certainly an extraordinary crucial time in our nation's history and will face many challenges ahead. i have to say that our thoughts and prayers go to a new colleague. not everyone knows that literally on the eve of the election her mother, ramona, passed away suddenly. i know that she, as all the members of the hahn family will be extraordinarily proud of this moment and we extend harty congratulations. i thank my colleague for yielding. the speaker: the gentlelady from california is recognized. ms. hahn: thank you. good afternoon, mr. speaker, leader pelosi, and honored members. it is wonderful to be here today representing the 36th congressional district in california.
i'm honored and thankful for this incredible opportunity to serve here in the united states house of representatives. i'm humbled to be the first los angeles city councilmember elected to congress since ed roybal-allard almost 50 years ago. -- ed roybal almost 50 years ago. my father, kenny, represented los angeles for more than 50 years. my brother is now superior court judge. my dad taught us serving others is a calling. it requires honesty, hard work and most importantly, the courage to do the right thing. in 1961 a young and controversial civil rights leader named martin luther king jr. came to los angeles for his very first visit. and not a single elected official wanted to greet or welcome him. except for one, my father. and that's where i got my political courage.
and we know that americans are counting on us now more than ever to solve their problems and working together with courage and in good faith i believe we can and we will. this past week i experienced a wonderful victory but also a profound loss. my dear, sweet mother passed away unexpectedly the day before the election. she was the driving force behind our family, and this is the first accomplishment i've ever had and not been able to share with her. she was looking forward to seeing this day, and i know both she and my father are looking down today smiling. and for that i want to thank everyone who made this possible. thank you to my children, katie, danny, mark. my son-in-law, john. my five beautiful grandchildren, three of whom are here today, mckenna,
brooklyn and josiah. and thank you to leader pelosi, democratic whip hoyer, and the california delegation. i want to thank my good friend, jane harman, for her years of service to this congress and to this nation and to the people of the 36th district. and i told her to leave the initials on the door when she stepped down. and thanks to my campaign staff and volunteers and the voters. i'll work every day with every bit of strength i have to serve you. i look forward to working with each and every one of you, getting to know each and every one of you. thank you and god bless you and god bless our beautiful country.
the speaker: under clause 5-d of rule 20, the chair announces to the house that in light of the administration of the oath to the gentlewoman from california, ms. hahn, the whole number of the house is 433. without objection, five-minute voting will continue. the question is on adoption of house resolution 355. those in favor indicate by saying aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the ayes have it. >> mr. speaker. the speaker: the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i ask for a recorded vote on the closed rule. the speaker: a recorded vote is requested. those favoring a recorded vote
will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
the house will be in order. for what purpose does the gentleman from idaho rise? >> madam speaker, i present a privileged report for printing under the rule. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: report to accompany h.r. 2584, a bill to -- making appropriations for the department of interior, environment, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2012, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the union calendar and ordered printed. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 21, points of order are reserved.
for what purpose does the gentleman from wisconsin seek recognition? mr. ryan: i ask unanimous consent that that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on h.r. 2650. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. ryan: i ask unanimous consent that mr. chesapeake bay fets, a member of the budget committee, control 30 minutes. mr. garrett the vice chair of the budget committee control 30 minutes, and mr. jordan control 30 minutes of debate. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. ryan: madam speaker, with
respect to the remaining time i reserve the balance of my time and turn it over to mr. chaffetz. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. does the gentleman from utah seek to call up the bill? mr. chaffetz: pursuant to the rule, i call up h.r. 2560. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 2560, a bill to cut, cap, and balance the federal budget. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 355, the bill is considered as read. the gentleman from utah, mr. chaffetz, and the gentleman from maryland, mr. van hollen, each will control two hours. the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: will the gentleman suspend. the house is not in order. the gentleman from utah.
mr. chaffetz: thank you, madam speaker. today is a historic day. we have an opportunity in this body to send a strong signal to the country we are going to live within our means. at the heart of this discussion is a discussion about whether or not our country is going to live within its means. what we ask for at the heart of this proposal is that we balance our budget. it's something that families do. it's something that businesses do. it's -- a balanced budget amendment is something 49 states across the country have. unfortunately, in congress' past, presidents past we have not lived within our means. i heard the argument that says we don't need a constitutional amendment. we just need to do our job. guess what? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman will suspend for a moment. the house is not in order. will all members who wish to have conversations please take them from the floor.
and will members and others in the back of the chamber please move your conversations off the floor. the gentleman may begin again. mr. chaffetz: madam speaker, we find this nation more than $14 trillion in debt. we are paying more than $600 million a day in interest on that debt. now, imagine, imagine the united states of america without that debt. we don't get anything for that $600 million. it's an obligation. we need to live up to those obligations. what this bill says is simple. we are going to cut, we are going to make an immediate cut to some spending. a paltry $111 billion the first year. number two, we are going to cap as a percentage of our gross domestic product the amount of money that we are going to spend going forward. so that there are targets in place for future congresses to consider and weigh and make the good decisions that need to be paid made. how are we going to prioritize
things? number three, we are going to seek to have a balanced budget amendment come to the floor of the house, come to the senate, and pass both bodies. if we can make that historic move and pass to the states a balanced budget amendment, then we will solve the underlying challenge that faces this country. we are spending too much money. i think everybody understands that. . but the question is, are we really going to do something about it? the question for the president, the question for the body moving forward is, do we have the fortitude to actually put before the states an amendment? that's all we ask. can the states have a say in this? to my senate colleagues, madam speaker, i would encourage them, they are to represent the states. what are they afraid of if they don't send a balanced budget amendment forward for ratification? we have to change the way we do business in washington, d.c. america gets it.
america understands it. but this body in its history has not lived up to that call. the future of our nation depends upon it. there's going to be all kinds of rhetoric of how we're cutting medicare. it's not true. it simply says we're going to have to put ourselves on a glide path to get some fiscal sanity back here. now, there is a timetable before us. we are going to run out of money. we're spending money we don't have. but there's a timetable before us. and so in just two weeks we're going to come upon this deadline. this is a real plan that can solve the solution and something that should be supported on both sides of the aisle. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. this is no time for this body to be playing dangerous games with the american economy and with the american jobs. and yet that's exactly what's going on on the floor of this
house today. our republican colleagues are taking the position that unless and until we accept their radical budget plan they will prevent the united states from paying its bills. and what does their budget plan do? yep, it is the same old plan to end the medicare guarantee, to slash medicaid, to cut education while protecting special interest tax breaks like subsidies for big oil companies. and here's what they're saying, unless we do that, unless we take that, they're going to prevent the united states from paying its bills. remember these are bills that are coming to on actions that this congress has already taken. these are the bills to pay for two wars, these are bills to pay for the prescription drug plan that was never paid for, and one of the primary reasons we don't have enough revenue
coming in to pay those bills is because of the tax cuts in 2001 and 2003 that disproportionately benefited the very wealthy. it's interesting to hear some of our republican colleagues who've been here for that entire period of time and voted on all those things saying it's a sacrifice for them to accept responsibility, for paying the bills for the things they voted for. imagine if the american people took that position. and what are the consequences of the united states failing to pay its bills? the same thing that would happen to an american family that decided not to pay its bills. whether it's the mortgage, car payment, whatever it might be, it would undermine the credit worthiness of that american family and taking that action would undermine the credit worthiness of the united states. that will lead to rises in interest rates and a sinking economy. it would hurt every american
family and it would increase, not decrease, the deficit of the united states. that is the result our republican colleagues are threatening in this bill if their demands are not met. so let's dig a little deeper into those demands. as i say, what they want to do is impose the same budget plan that they voted on earlier in this house and we debated. it does end the medicare guarantee, it does slash medicaid and education and it does protect corporate tax loopholes. only this time it's worse because they want to take that budget plan and implant it in the constitution of the united states. now, nobody in this body should be fooled for one moment. this is not an ordinary balanced budget amendment to the constitution. we can have that debate and there are legitimate arguments.
this says something very different and very sinister. it manipulates the constitution of the united states in a way to graph the republican budget plan into the constitution. how does it do it? there are two devices and the gentleman knows them well. the first is it says you can cut medicare, you can cut social security, you can cut education with the majority vote, but if you want to cut a subsidy for a big oil company for the purposes of reducing the deficit, if you want to cut corporate jet loopholes for the purpose of reducing the deficit, that's not a majority vote. that's a supermajority, 2/3 vote, so it bias the constitution itself in a manner that prefers cuts to medicare beneficiaries who have a median
income of under $225,000 before asking the very wealthiest in our country to return to the same tax rates that were in place during the clinton administration. secondly, it says we have to pass a constitutional amendment in the next two days that includes an overall cap on spending. if you look at the bill that came out of the judiciary committee, what that would impose is an 18% cap. maybe 18%, maybe 19% in the end, we don't know, but it has to have a cap. and the one that's come out so far has an 18% cap. now, let's put that number into context. not since 1966 just after we enacted medicare to protect our senior citizens from health crises, not since that time has the united states met that level of expenditures. we've been over that level of expenditures. so by putting that cap on combined with the provision to
make it easier to cut medicare than it is to cut corporate tax subsidies, they are writing into the constitution itself this bias. they're stacking the constitutional -- putting it into our founding document. now, i heard the gentleman say and we heard it many times and i hope we will not hear it on the floor today, 49 of the 50 states have balanced budget amendments. that's true, but they don't have this kind of balanced budget amendment. they don't have balanced budget amendments with these pernicious features with some exceptions. 1 states have a supermajority requirement written in their constitution for a good number of those, the hess than 2/3, which is what -- it's less than 2/3, which is what this would require. 16 states write in their constitution spending caps.
and only 14 combine the two. it's an argument which ignores the reality that the federal government is not just any old state. it is the federal government of the united states of america. it needs to be able to respond to emergencies and wars and the like. so let me close with this, madam speaker. we do need to, number one, make sure we pay our bills and, number two, we need to get our deficits under control in a way that help our economy, not hurt it. and that's why the president of the united states put forward a proposal that is modeled on the framework that was put forward by the bowles commission. it doesn't have every detail in it, but it adopts the framework that says, let's cut the deficit by approximately $4 trillion over the next 10 years. let's do it in a balanced way. in fact, it's tilted toward spending cuts. $3 of spending cuts for every
dollar 1 in revenue. he wants to make sure we get the revenue. closing some of these corporate tax loopholes. asking the top 2% to pay the taxes like in the clinton administration, a time when we created 20 million jobs. so let's take a balanced approach to this. let's not take the position that if our demands are not met, if we cannot manipulate the constitution of the united states to engraphed our budget plan into that founding document, then we're going to let the united states fail to pay its bills and suffer the terrible economic consequences. it's not so much members in this body that will be suffering, it's the american people. let's not do that to the american people. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: i would ask the gentleman if he could give us a copy of that plan right now during this debate we would certainly appreciate it. the second thing is what we're talking about is a balanced budget.
that's certainly what we're talking about. now would like to recognize one minute the leader, our leader, mr. cantor from virginia. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia is recognized for one minute. mr. canton: thank you, madam speaker. i thank the gentleman from utah. madam speaker, it is time -- mr. cantor: thank you, madam speaker. i thank the gentleman from utah. madam speaker, it's time that we be clear with the american team -- american people. it's no choice but to cut spending and living within our means. contrary to what the gentleman on the other side continues to say, no one, no one wants to bring default onto our country. and with millions of americans out of work, we've got to focus on getting the economy growing again. we, as republicans, as the new majority in this house, as the gentleman from maryland knows, have put a plan on the table that ensures washington does
not continue to spend money it doesn't have. house republicans have a plan to cut, cap and balance our way to prosperity. this commonsense legislation provides a straightforward plan to curb our massive debt and help our spending. the legislation before us would require, one, a balanced budget component, two, a supermajority requirement to raise taxes on the american people, and, three, a limit on spending as a percentage of g.d.p. madam speaker, today the house has the opportunity to show the people that sent us here that we are serious about turning the page on the failed fiscal policies that this town has been about over the last several decades and begin to get the fiscal house in order. house republicans were voted
into office to change the culture in washington and we will not support the other side's request or the president's request to increase the debt limit without meaningful reforms to the system. 49 states, including my home state of virginia, already have a balanced budget requirement, and it's time that the federal government reflect the same policy to get our fiscal house in order. cut, cap and balance makes sure that we begin to treat taxpayer dollars more responsibly just like families and businesses do with their own budgets. we cannot continue to kick the can down the road. madam speaker, the president continues to say, as the gentleman on the other side tries to imply as well, that they want to do big things. we do as well. as evidenced by our budget that we put on the table. but we implored the other side to get serious.
let's do big things. let's get our fiscal house in order. but let's do so without imposing higher taxes on the small business people that we so desperately need to start hiring again. and the gentleman from maryland loves to talk about those corporate loopholes. he loves to talk about corporate jet owners and the kind of preferences that exist in the code. the gentleman from maryland knows all too well. he and i were in discussions for almost seven weeks when i said again and again that we would be happy to engage in a discussion of tax reform to get rid of those loopholes. the gentleman also knows that those loopholes and the costs associated with those loopholes pale in comparison to the problem. so i know it makes for good politics to go throw the shiny ball out there, madam speaker -- mr. van hollen: will the
gentleman yield? mr. cantor: i will not yield. to throw the shiny ball out there that somehow the republicans will sustain these preferences when all along in our budget and in our plan we have said we're for tax reform. we have said we're for bringing down rates on everybody. and that's it, madam speaker. let's get serious and stop playing politics. it's not about that. there is no disagreement that any of us want to support those loopholes, but what's really going on, madam speaker, in all of the debt discussion, in all of the negotiation is the fact that the minority and its party and the president continue to insist that we raise taxes on the small business people that we need so desperately to begin creating jobs and hiring people again. and with that, madam speaker, i yield back.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from maryland. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. i wish the gentleman had yielded because i think it would become very clear that the republican position is they won't close a tax loophole that generates one penny for deficit reduction, not one penny, so you can't close a corporate jet loophole if it's going to deficit reduction. you can't say to the oil and gas companies, we're going to end your subsidy if it's going to go for oil -- if it's going to go for deficit reduction. we all know there are a lot of washington lobbyists that manipulate the tax code around here. getting a tax break, a taxpayer giveaway to the tax code is just like getting something through strength, and yet our republican -- spending, and yet our republican colleagues refuse to allow any cut in a loophole to go to deficit reduction. not one penny. again, we heard it from the majority leader, we're going to
hear it i guess all day, 49 out of 50 states have balanced budget amendments. this is not the kind of balanced budget amendment the states have. this writes into the constitution of the united states, again, a preference for cutting medicare and social security, that requires a majority vote, but in order to close one of those corporate tax loopholes for the purpose of reducing the deficit, you need a 2/3 vote. you're going to abed into the constitution of the united states those policy preferences. that is exactly what this does. so, let's not hear about the 49 states, they don't all have these spending caps and they don't all have that preference protecting special interest tax breaks from use for deficit reduction. with that i yield to our distinguished leader of the democratic caucus, mr. larson. the speaker pro tempore: how much time does the gentleman yield to the gentleman from connecticut? the gentleman from maryland, how much time is yielded?
mr. van hollen: i apologize, three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from connecticut is recognized for three minutes. mr. larson: thank you, madam speaker. i terrorize associate myself with the remarks of the distinguished gentleman from maryland, mr. van holland. let me say that in his opening comments i think he's laid it out pretty well. cut, cap and balance, one has to resist on our side the notion that this is cut, cap and get rid of medicare. the public has had it with this theater of the absurd that's going on. they want congress to come together as our president has suggested and do the most important thing that we can, create jobs for the american people.
in my hometown people ask me, what's going on, seems like a light beer commercial where there's this endless quibbling back and forth with people on both sides of the aisle who care deeply about their country but seem to do little about putting the nation back to work. we face a crisis with the debt ceiling, a debt ceiling that's 17 times under ronald reagan was lifted without any bill being held hostage and clearly not programs like medicare and social security. this is a time for us to come together and reason in a rational process. there are no immediate tax impositions placed by the president. all of you have been in the negotiations understand and know
that. in fact, this congress when we were in the majority passed the largest tax cut for the middle class. the largest tax cut. i continue to believe that the people in my hometown have it right. that the issue is about jobs, we cannot take this nation up to the precipice, up to the cliff again and risk endangerment of default. a as ronald reagan said, this -- as ronald reagan said, this would be a catastrophe for this country, to allow this to take place. we need to stay at the table and continue to negotiate around the idea of jobs. taking a look at those things strategically that can be cut, that create jobs. and those revenues that can be enhanced to create jobs. to put the american people back to work. that's what the american people
want to see, the congress that can come together, i stand by our president, by this great chairman and making sure that we don't go through this theater of the absurd. you know that this is not a true balanced budget amendment. you know that in your heart. you have talent and good people on your side, as do we. let's be about putting america back to work and create jobs. let's not talk about defaulting on the nation or defaulting on the american people. let's talk about putting them back to work. that's what we need to do in this nation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: for two years under barack obama the democrats had the house, the senate and the presidency, you didn't do a thing to touch those so-called loopholes. to try to feign how exasperated you are at this point is somewhat disengine white house for someone who sat here -- disingenuous for someone who sat here for two years. what we're fighting for is more taxpayers, not more taxes.
the president said he was going to veto it this bill, it provided a whole lot of clarity to a guy like me. if we can't find common ground on balancing the budget, how dare we offer that we want to balance the budget? that's all we ask for in this country is put us on a trajectory to balance the budget. with that i'll yield two minutes -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman will suspend. the chair will remind members that all remarks should be addressed to the chair. thank you. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: i now recognize the gentleman from georgia who is the chairman of the house policy committee, mr. price of georgia. the speaker pro tempore: for how much time? mr. chaffetz: two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for two minutes. mr. price: my friend talks about the theater of the absurd. i'll tell you what's absurd. it's saying that they have a plan when they have no plan at all. that's what's absurd. then we are here today dealing with this challenge ought not be a surprise to anybody. decade after decade, congress
after congress, president after president they have borrowed too much, spent too much and taxed too much. which is why our new majority, now just over six months in office, has put forward positive, substantive proposals to change the way that washington does business. it's exactly what america is demanding. our challenges are huge. but solutions based upon principle is exactly what is needed. and hence this current bill, with short-term, midterm and long-term solutions. in the short-term responsible, appropriate spending reductions. in the midterm, limit and control federal spending as a percent of grows domestic product. and in the long-term, -- gross domestic product. and in the long-term, stop the madness. force washington to do what every single family in this country does and every single business in this country does and that is to balance our budget. president obama has issued a veto threat saying essentially that balancing the budget is an
unrealistic policy goal. this is an administration that says it wants to do big things. mr. president, is getting our debt and deficit under control too much to ask? is that too big, mr. president? what is unrealistic is to assume that we can spend at the levels that president obama and congressional democrats have done over the past few years, amass trillion-dollar annual deficits and still have a vibrant economy. now that's unrealistic. putting america's fiscal house in order is not only realistic and achievable, it's imperative. it's imperative in order to get our economy moving again and creating jobs. this bill is a positive solution, a commonsense solution, an honest solution and a bold solution. i encourage my colleagues to support this bill and begin to travel on a path to prosperity. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. i just want to make a couple points in response to statements that have been raised.
not only would this write in the constitution a 2/3 requirement for getting rid of special interest tax breaks for the purposes of deficit reduction, it would make it easier to create new special interest tax loopholes than to eliminate them. if a washington lobbyist is pushing for a big special break, you can do that with a majority vote under this constitutional amendment. but if you want to eliminate one of those special interest tax loopholes, whoops, you need 2/3 vote. nop now, let's be very clear on what the president has said. yes, weigh want to close those corporate loopholes. he's also been very clear that beginning in 2013 we should go back to asking the very top income earners to pay the same rates they were paying during the clinton administration which is, as i said, was a time when the economy was booming. every time we mention that fact we hear our republican colleagues talk about small business and how they're going to protect small business. when you hear that language, you
really know that they're using that as cover to protect some of these big special interests. why do i say that? we agree that small businesses are the engine of this economy, but if you look at the joint tax committee report, july 12, 2010, nonpartisan, they say that 3% of all businesses would be even impacted. only 3%. less than 3% of all businesses would be impacted by the president's proposal, those that files a s corporations and then it goes on to provide a warning here. specifically saying, beware because these entities might not be small. in fact they say in 2005, over 12,000 s corporations and 6,000 partnerships had receipts of more than $50 million. among those are k.k.r., price warner house, now, these are all
good businesses, but i would ask my colleagues whether they are small businesses and let's not use the rhetoric of small businesses to protect preferences for the big guys. we all need to share responsibility for getting this deficit under control. we need a balanced approach to doing that and with that i yield three minutes to my colleague on the budget committee, ms. schwartz. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from pennsylvania is recognized for three minutes. ms. schwartz: thank you very much. i appreciate the comments of the ranking member and this discussion. let me be very clear. let me start by saying that republicans continue to play politics rather than do its best for this country. particularly to do what is responsible at a critical time for our nation. they are once again holding american families and american businesses hostage by threatening to allow the united states to default on our debt. to not meet our responsibilities
until their extreme ideological demands are met. their plan is not a balanced approach to what is right for our country. it ends medicare guaranteed for our seniors, shall i repeat that? it ends the medicare guaranteed for our seniors and it slashes education and opportunity for the next generation of americans. it inhibits our ability to falter -- foster an environment for private sector economic growth by cutting any chance of investment in scientific research and technology, in roads, bridges and highways, and access to higher education to the very, very kinds of actions we need to take to establish an atmosphere of a private sector growth in this nation, whether large or small business. and the republican plan is disastrous at a very fragile time in our economic recovery. it will devastate america's future economic competitiveness. the republican majority has yet to produce legislation that puts american economy back on track and americans back to work.
this legislation guarantees that we won't meet our obligations as a nation to our seniors or to our children and it will dramatically reduce our ability to compete in a global economy. make no mistake, the republican plan always has been to cut social security and medicare, to cap economic opportunity and to balance the budget on the backs of middle class families. cut, cap and balance is bad for american families, bat for american businesses -- bad for american businesses and bad for our nation's economy now and into the future and we should not let it pass. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: madam speaker, the only thing cut, cap and balance is bad for is for members of congress because we're going to have to actually rein in spending. they're going to have to live within a balanced budget. i would also highlight for the record rule 21, section 5-b. you know, i've heard a lot of rhetoric in the news and other places how there's going to be
this higher standard. it should be noted that the passage of a tax rate increase under this section, a bill or joint resolution, amendment or conference report carrying a federal income tax rate increase may not be considered as passed or agreed to unless as so determined by a vote of no less than 3/5 of the members voting. so we had that higher standard in raising taxes, that is nothing new. at this time i'd like to recognize for two minutes the gentleman from wisconsin, a freshman member, mr. ribble. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized for two minutes. mr. ribble: thank you, thank you, madam speaker. i rise today in support of h.r. 2560, the cut cutler -- cut, cap and balance act of 2011 to. put our nation back on the -- 2011. to put our nation back on the path to prosperity, we must pass budgets that spend the same amount of money that comes in. just last weekend s&p 500 announced that they were reviewing america's triple-a
bond rating. an agreement couldn't be met, our country will face the risk of having its bond rating downgraded. this will not only result in higher borrowing rates for businesses and individuals, but also stifle new job creation and capital investment. we simply cannot allow this to happen. a few days ago president obama said we need to eat our peas. well, i couldn't agree more. our bloated and obese federal budget needs a healthy and balanced diet. one that trims the fat of overspending and grows the muscle of our nation's economy and that's exactly what h.r. 2560 does, it provides a balanced approach to our nation's fiscal problems. and there's nothing more balanced than a balanced budget. there's nothing more american than permitting the states and more importantly the american people to have a voice in the direction this nation will take. there's nothing more prudent than stepping forward and leading today so that our children and grandchildren will have a better future tomorrow.
the future of our country is on the line and if this congress wants to have a more prosperous future for our children and grandchildren we must change our spending habits. we need to stop placing this government's out-of-control spending habits onto the backs of future generations. this bill does exactly that, and i am proud to support it. thank you, madam speaker, and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. the sponsor of the bill mentioned some house rules. i think he's well aware you can always waive house rules by majority vote. thank goodness you cannot just waive the constitution of the united states. our founders made it difficult to get bad ideas into the constitution. i want to make clear, this is not your garden variety balanced budget amendment. this is manipulation of the constitution of the united states itself in a way that
makes it easier to cut medicare, easier to cut social security than it is to reduce corporate lool holes. it's right in there -- corporate loopholes. it's right there. i yield to the gentlewoman from minnesota, ms. mccollum for three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from minnesota is recognized for three minutes. ms. mccollum: the bill on the floor is a political stunt, a gimmick. this bill does reflect the republican guise. this republican bill protects the wealthiest americans. this republican bill plomettes seniors and the middle class. no surprise this bill goes to the tea party extremists. this bill will end the medicare guarantee. this bill will kill jobs. and thank goodness this bill will never pass the united states senate. this bill will never become law. the republican majority is wasting precious time.
as the clock ticks and ticks closer to default. the republican majority is choosing the american public to come to a brink of default for everything that has to do with politics. the dangerous brand of armageddon economics. it's time to be responsible for paying america's bills without tea party gimmicks and games. this congress needs to take a serious stand and get busy creating jobs and putting people back to work and getting this economy growing. let's end the debate on this radical legislation right now. let's get to the real work of cutting deficits, creating jobs and growing the economy. madam speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: thank you, madam speaker. i'd now like to recognize two minutes, the gentleman from texas, a member of the house budget committee, mr. flores. the speaker pro tempore: the
gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. flores: madam speaker, on july 15, 2011, just four days ago, president obama said, we don't need a constitutional amendment to do our jobs. but the president clearly does. let's go through the facts which the other side has conveniently forgotten. in the 30 months that he's been president, the short 30 months, he's added almost $4 trillion to our national debt. that's $133 billion a month, $3.1 million per minute, $51,000 per second. we have seen the destruction of medicare through the enactment of obamacare making medicare inol vent by more than $-- insolvent by more than $60 trillion. you can right over here and see medicare destruction. we have almost 40 million americans on food stamp, the most ever.
we've spent $1 trillion on a stimulus plan, but we still have one out of every six working age americans either unemployed or underemployed. this is what mr. obama calls winning the future. that's what he threatened in his veto of cut, cap and balance. he wants to win the future. well, mr. obama, you are not winning the future. you are not winning anything. the obama plan for our country is tax, spend and regulate. not winning the future. more taxes means fewer jobs, more spending and more debt, fewer jobs and less economic growth. more regulation. fewer jobs, less economic growth. and with the obama plan there's more. you get to have gas leap prices that are double what -- gasoline prices that are double what they were when he was inaugurated. there is a real plan to correct this. cut, cap and balance takes away
the blank check that this congress has exercised for decades and that this president clearly seems to enjoy. it's time we stop the blank check spending now and take the necessary steps to force congress to enact responsibility and live within its means just like my constituents in texas do already. it's time for cut, cap and balance. mr. obama, when i was sworn in, my constituents gave me a -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman will suspend. the gentleman will suspend. members are -- members -- the chair would like to gently remind members to address their remarks to the chair and not to others in the second person. the gentleman's time has expired. mr. chaffetz: madam speaker, i yield 30 seconds to the gentleman from texas. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for 30 seconds -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 30 seconds. mr. flores: my constituents gave me a stamp that says, nonsufficient funds, denied by
taxpayers. thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. when we were all sworn in we were also sworn to protect the constitution of the united states, not manipulate the united states to protect special interest tax breaks for oil and gas companies or other special interests by implanting into that document a requirement that 2/3 of this body and the senate have to vote to get rid of them for purposes of deficit reduction. i also think that while we're all entitled to our own opinions, we are not entitled to our own facts. if you look at the medicare trustees report it will indicate that the health care reform bill extended the life of the trust fund and we also did it by getting rid of the overpayments to some of the medicare advantage plans that were being paid at 114% of what
other plans were being paid for. taxpayers were oversubsidizing those plans as were medicare recipients. with that i yield three minutes to a terrific member of the budget committee, mr. tonko. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized for three minutes. mr. tonko: thank you, madam speaker. i thank the ranking member of the committee. there's not a single person in this chamber who doesn't want to balance the budget, but the legislation before us today is not about that. it is about enshrining a particularly radical interpretation of the republican agenda in the foundational document, a precious document, our constitution that guides our system of government. if successful, it would put in place a cap on federal spending at 18% of g.d.p., turning back the clock by more than half a crntry to the glory days of 1966. though it makes for a great press release, why didn't anyone else think of this solution? even president reagan never
once requested a federal budget that spent nearly this low. well, to begin with, our population is much larger and much older on average than it was in 1966. some see that as a problem. seniors are expensive, they say. i suppose that's one way of looking at it, and if all you're worried about is how much grandma's nursing home care costs, then this is the bill for you. but since 1966, grandma is living on average nearly 10 years longer. there is no price you can place on that, and there is no question that it's because she's getting a guaranteed level of health care. this bill, according to their own leaders, enshrines the republican plan to end medicare in the united states constitution. right there after the freedom of religion, the freedom of thought, the freedom of assembly we can have the freedom from health care after age 65. there's nothing more than a
political -- this is nothing more than a political gimmick, a stunt that will change the rules of our democratic system so our republican colleagues can make it easier to end medicare and more difficult to cut tax giveaways to billionaires, to millionaires, and to their friends, big oil. let's stop this nonsense and get back to work. let's stop the nonsense that's playing games with america's working families. they promote this as a way to fiscal sanity but rather it's a lack of investment insanity. it's an assault on our children, our families, our veterans, our seniors. let's put america back to work. let's invest in those opportunities and reduce the deficit as we move forward. enough with the foolish gimmicks. i yield back the remainder of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: i love that, foolish gimmicks. i'd now like to recognize the gentleman from virginia, two minutes, mr. goodlatte. the speaker pro tempore: the
gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. goodlatte: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks and the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. goodlatte: i rise in support of the cut, cap and balance legislation. i commend the gentleman from utah and all the others who brought this forward and here's why. right here, we had a vote here on the floor of this house a few weeks ago about the president of the united states' request, just give me a clean debt limit increase. every single republican and nearly, nearly a majority of the democrats voted to do the opposite, to not give him a can he tell limit -- give him a debt limit increase. this shows us why we are here today with cut, cap and balance legislation. this is the track that the democrats have us on right now. this is the track that we'll be on if the president had gotten his wish for a debt limit increase without any spending cuts, without any caps on future spending and without
what 80% of the american people want which is a balanced budget amendment of the constitution. this green line is what we're voting on today. this is what the house budget, already adopted by this institution and that we're operating under right now with our appropriations bill, this is what would put us on a target to. not only balance the budget but also to pay off the $14 trillion national debt that we are faced with right now. our children and grandchildren are faced with. the future of our economy is faced with right now. so if this is the choice that we have here today, take care of the debt limit. don't default. don't default on our obligations. no one here wants to do that. but also cut spending, cap spending and pass a balanced budget amendment of the united states constitution. in 1995, we came within one
vote in the united states senate after the house of representatives cast 300 bipartisan votes for a balanced budget amendment of the united states constitution. and now we have the opportunity to lay the groundwork, to do it again but this time to succeed. and we have much, much greater reason to do that because of the fact that we are faced with this mountain of ready ink that we can turn into a bright future for america. i urge my colleagues to support this legislation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. we've been making the point that this is not your garden variety constitutional amendment. this -- mr. goodlatte: will the gentleman yield? mr. van hollen: mr. goodlatte was asked at the hearing on his proposal for a constitutional amendment which was voted out of the committee to identify
one budget that would meet the requirements of their version, this version of the constitutional amendment. and it was pointed out that even the draconian -- mr. goodlatte: will the gentleman yield? mr. van hollen: i will not yield on my time. the gentleman pointed out that not even the republican budget that passed the house that ends the medicare guarantee and is draw copian, not only -- draconian, is not good. like the republican plan on steroids. in fact, a lot of members on the republican side decided that was way overboard. that would require slashes in things like medicare and social security even more than the republican budget that passed the house. so that is the one budget that was identified as meeting the requirements of that constitutional ealt. this is not a simple constitutional amendment.
they know that's a popular idea so they're dressing up their particular version of it in that language. talk about 49 out of 50 states have this. again, two devices. one supermajority, 2/3 vote required to cut corporate tax loopholes when only a simple majority is required to cut medicare and social security. we don't think things like that belong in the constitution of the united states. and with that i yield three minutes to the distinguished member of the budget committee, ms. bass. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from california is recognized for three minutes. ms. bass: thank you. i'd like to thank the ranking member of the budget committee of which i am very proud to be a member. i rise in strong op sisition to h.r. 25 -- strong opposition to h.r. 2560. to me it feels like groundhog's day again here in the house of representatives. duck, dodge and dismantle is brought to the floor today for a vote. i have to tell you that i've seen this movie before. the storyline rewards the ultrawealthy while punishing
working families. i served as speaker of the california assembly while my state staggered from budget crisis to budget crisis. we cut spending drastically from $110 billion to $83 billion but every year california is subject to national ridicule. why does california have this problem? well, madam speaker, we have a balanced budget requirement in california, we require 2/3 vote to raise revenue, we can pass tax loopholes and breaks on a simple majority vote. so how is that working for us in california? well, i'd like to invite my colleagues on the other side of the aisle to come to california. every year the state is held hostage, every year my republican colleagues attempt to have a cap that is passed similar to the cap that is proposed in this legislation.
and every year the state reaches the brink of a shutdown. so why on earth would we want to import the dysfunction from california to the nation? we should be dealing with the debt ceiling free and clear. we should not force a default in order to bring about legislation that is not related to the debt ceiling. our government should not pick winners and losers which is exactly what will happen if we don't raise the debt ceiling. whether veterans should be paid, if i.r.s. refunds can be honored, if pell grants will be available and if food stamps can be distributed. and that's exactly what would happen if the debt limit is not raised. i urge a no vote on this bill and i yield the rest of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: i believe the gentleman said he would answer a question if we did it on our time. would you support any balanced budget amendment? is there any balanced budget amendment that you would support? mr. van hollen: i would be happy to entertain -- mr. chaffetz: it's a simple yes or no. mr. van hollen: no, here's the
question. mr. chaffetz: it's a simple yes or no. mr. van hollen: let me just say this. i would not want to prevent the united states from being able to respond in cases of war, in national emergency so, look -- mr. chaffetz: reclaiming my time. reclaiming the time. mr. van hollen: i'm happy to work with the gentleman on that but that's depiff than what you're talking about. mr. chaffetz: reclaiming my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: thank you, madam speaker. i would now yield two minutes to the gentlewoman from tennessee, dine black, who is here as a freshman in the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from tennessee is recognized for two minutes. mrs. black: thank you, madam speaker. last week president obama got up on his pulpit and told the house republicans it was time to eat our peas. as a part of the debt deal. and the president said that, to us, yet he has not come forward with a detailed written plan of his own. all we hear from the white house is about job-killing tax increases and a mystical dollar
amount of cuts but no actual concrete figures on how to achieve it. the president has yet to put his plan on the table, even though the congress has been asking for a scoreble plan from him for months. in fact, he did not even respond to a request from myself and 76 of our freshmen members who wrote to him and asked him over a month ago, asking him to come to the -- to the table and put pen to paper. and yet even in the absence of a plan from the white house, the president is now threatening to votee a cut, cap and balance before it was even brought to the floor -- veto a cut, cap and balance before it was even brought to the floor for debate. this isn't the first time the president has rejected a good plan put together by the house of representatives. not only did the house provide a plan and the path to prosperity, our republican house budget, but here we are today about to vote on cut, cap and balance which represents a solution to the current debt ceiling debate. for someone who claims he wants to solve this issue, he has
rejected every good proposal that has come his way. mr. president, it is time to eat your peas. i urge my colleagues to vote for cut, cap and balance. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. the chair will once again remind members, very gently, to address their remarks to the chair and not to others in the second person. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. i would just remind my colleagues that the president has put on the table a balanced approach to reducing the deficit , it would cut about $1 trillion -- $4 trillion from the deficit over the next 10 to 12 years, it's a balanced approach again based on the overall framework of the bipartisan simpson-bowles commission, it calls for $3 in spending cuts for $1 in revenue that would be raised after 2013 by closing special interest tax loopholes and asking the folks
at the very top to go back to the same rates that were in place during the clinton administration. that's what the president has said, it's hard to have a conversation when the other party in negotiations takes a position that they will not allow one cent from closing a corporate tax loophole to go for the purposes of deficit reduction. and now we see them trying to enshrine within the constitution a limitation on our ability to get rid of those special interest tax loopholes, they would now require a 2/3 vote, that is a washington lobbyist's dream in the constitution. with that i yield two minutes to the distinguished ranking member of the small business committee, ms. velazquez. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from new york is recognized for two minutes. ms. velazquez: thank you, ranking member, for yielding. madam speaker, as we debate how to avert the default crisis, we should acknowledge what got us into the current mess. the real reason that the united
states faces debt dilemma dates back to a series of irresponsible tax cuts. $2.5 trillion in tax giveaways that were unpaid for and went disproportion atly to the wealthiest americans -- disproportionately to the wealthiest americans put us on this unsustainable path. we were told tax cuts will provide an economic boost. so what do we get for this enormous addition to the deficit? was our economy strengthened? were new jobs created? the answer is a resounding no. in fact, the medium income for working families fell by 2.4% during the first 10 years these tax cuts were in place. while food, housing and other necessities became more expensive. recreation plummeted to 33 new
jobs a month, the lowest levels since president hoover. the record is clear. giving tax breaks to the wealthiest without paying for it ballooned out deficit but didn't create jobs. now the proposal before us will not just continue this misguided policy of slash and burns but make it worse. it won't create jobs for americans but will slash services working families rely on. make no mistake, america. this plan begins the dismantling of medicare and social security. meanwhile subsidies for big oil companies and tax breaks for billionaires will be locked in. once and for all, at a time when our economy is struggling this bill will cost hundreds of thousands of american jobs. if you like 9% unemployment you will love this bill.
vote for it, vote against this bill, stop playing pure politics, the american people deserve -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman's time has expired. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: we have 9%-plus unemployment, madam speaker. we've been north of that for a long time and we're now also straddled with more than $14 trillion in debt. i'd now like to recognize the gentleman from oklahoma who is on the budget committee, mr. lankford, for two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from oklahoma is recognized for two minutes. mr. lankford: thank you, madam speaker. we have two distinctly different views and it's not just republican or democrat views. one group cease the impending crisis as -- sees the impending crisis on whether we're going to vote to increase the debt creel and all the crisis is based around august 2. the other group sees the crisis as the debt itself. how you see the crisis will affect your view of how you choose to solve it. if the problem is the uncertainty around just this vote, then we do whatever it takes to get past august 2 and the problem is solved.
if the problem is the debt when we raise the ceiling we will face a debt apreaching -- approaching $14 trillion with no strategy to pay off that debt and our disaster is not averted, it has been accelerated. one thing we know, just raising the debt limit does not solve the problem. we've done that many times in the past. the economy that we have now is a result of the actions that we've taken in the past to continually raise the debt ceiling over and over again with no plan to get out of it. what if we raise the debt ceiling and depree to the president's oral plan? the best we understand, timothy geithner made the statement in june that the plan is $2 trillion in cuts over the next 10 years, $1 trillion in tax increases and $1 trillion in interest savings, whatever that means. if we accomplish that plan and do that and just raise the debt ceiling, we will then have a debt in 10 years of $24 trillion , with still no plan to pay it
off. that does not solve the debt crisis, that accelerates our debt crisis. i've heard all day what a disaster it would be to balance our budget. only in this room is it a disaster to balance the budget. i don't think americans understand what we're talking about, i don't think they understand how out of touch we've really become that we would argue about balancing the budget. s&p 500 and moodies have both threatened to downgrade our debt because we have no credible plan to ever pay this off. cut, cap and balance gives us a credible framework that year after year we will work to be able to resolve this debt, pay it down and get back in balance. with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. nobody is saying that we shouldn't balance our budget. we should balance our budget. in fact, the last time it was in balance was during the clinton administration when they took a
balanced approach to reducing the deficit. including having in place sufficient revenues from the folks at the very top to help cover our bills. and what happened in 2001, 2003, is that we had back to back tax cuts that disproportionately benefited the very wealthy which are a significant contributor to why there's now a mismatch between the bills we have to pay and the revenue coming in which is why the president of the united states has said, let's reduce the deficit, let's do it in a balanced way, let's do $3 in cuts to $1 in revenue and i go back to the fact that they want to insert in the constitution, the republicans in the house want to incertificate in the constitution of the united states -- insert in the constitution of the united states a provision that would require a 2/3 vote to get rid of a special interest tax loophole for the purpose of desit reduction -- deficit reduction. that kind of makes it difficult
to have a balanced plan and with that i yield two minutes to mr. farr from california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for two minutes. mr. farr: thank you very much, madam speaker. and thank you, mr. van hollen, for yielding. last night i was in a town hall meeting in california. it was very clear, bipartisan whole group of people and what they told us truly was, stop playing games. they know that the united states congress, since 1940, has voted over 90 times, 0 times to raise the debt and never once with a game, never once with preconditions, you have to do this and do that. you guys are ruining this country's fiscal future. by lighting a fire to our fiscal sanity and to our reputation. you want to take down our constitution by requiring a 2/3 vote. look, you want -- you should look before you leap. california did this by initiative in 1990.
that state has added 2/3 locked, impossible -- it's dropped from the six wealthiest economy in the world. you want to follow that lead by amending the u.s. constitution and locking in all these tax laws? you're just freezing in every single impropriety that's in the tax code. these people in my town hall meeting said stop playing games, they said it because they don't think you ought to put conditionality on it. vote for a clean debt limit. i did. not one of you did it. not one republican voted for that. shame on you. shame on you on playing fire with the united states constitution, shame on you on cut, cap and balance -- cut, cap and ruin the united states. vote no. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will once again remind members to address their remarks to the chair and not to others in the second person. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: i can hear the chant on other side, some 90 times, the debt ceiling has been
raised. that's the problem. but i can hear the chant on the other side, one more time, one more time, one more time. that's why we're in this mess. congresses in the past have not stepped up to the call, they have not said enough is enough. and now as our debt ceiling starts to reach, we're going to get close to 100% of our gross domestic product, enough is enough. i'd now like to yield to the gentleman from indiana, mr. young, for two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana is recognized for two minutes. mr. young: thank you, madam speaker. i am on record last night speaking to the cut, cap and balance act of 2011, what the many merits are of this legislation. i think it's a fine bill and i commend its consideration to those on the other side of the aisle. but i have to say that debate surrounding cut, cap and balance has a certain "alice in wonderland" character in it. it made me open up the old storybook minutes ago and
recall a favorite passage. recall alice asks, would you tell me which way i ought to go from here to which the cat responds, that depends a good deal on where you want to get. alice replies, i really don't care where. and then, of course, the cat says, then it doesn't much matter which way you go. you get the sense my good friends on the other side of the aisle don't really care where we go from here. they certainly don't care enough to put a specific plan forward themselves. unemployment remains at 9.2%. investment in hiring remains sluggish. all around this country, particularly in places like my southern indiana district. uncertainty raines about future interest rates, future inflation rates all because washington continues to spend way too much money, often on things we don't need but also on public programs. we need to figure it out as a country. our national debt is over $14 trillion. it's time we come forward with specific plans. yet, the other side still has
no plan. seemingly no new ideas to offer to this debate. no solutions. only poll-tested rhetoric. the american people deserve more than this during this critical time. our markets are certainly asking for more than this. standard & poor's on july 14 said, quote, we may lower the long-term rating on the u.s. if we conclude that congress and the administration have not achieved a credible solution to the rising u.s. government debt burden and are not likely to achieve one in the foreseeable future. we need a plan. house republicans have been putting forward a plan. we put forward a plan that has already been approved, to close tax loopholes, in order to make the tax code flatter, fairer and simpler. i ask for another minute of the time. mr. chaffetz: i yield the gentleman an additional 15 seconds. mr. young: we need more plan from the president. let's reject this "alice in
wonderland" sort of leadership. don't bring me problems, i say to my colleagues, bring me a solution. one conclusion is the cut, cap and balance act, and i commend it for your consideration. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. the one sure fire away that we are going to send interest rates up in this country and add to the cost of living to every american is if the united states doesn't pay its bills. bills for obligations that we've already taken on which is what this is about. some people have, again, think it's a sacrifice to pay bills for actions and decisions that they've already supported and voted for. i'd also point out that the republican budget that passed the house and that would be put into this bill would require us to raise the debt ceiling by $8 trillion between now and 2022. so let's not play this game
with respect to paying our nation's bills. we have to do two things. we have to pay our nation's bills. every family has to pay its bills. and we have to come up with a deficit reduction plan. the reality is the president has put a plan on the table. the reality is our republican colleagues don't happen to like it because, as i said, for every $3 in spending cuts it would ask us to have $1 in revenue from closing these special interest tax loopholes and, again, they want to -- they want to manipulate the constitution of the united states to protect those loopholes, to make it hard to get rid of them. with that i yield two minutes to the gentleman from new jersey, mr. andrews. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized for two minutes. mr. andrews: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. andrews: thank you, madam speaker. madam speaker, the country has a jobs crisis. we have the same number of private sector jobs we did in 2001 and 14% more people
looking for work. one of the ways to solve that job crisis, not the only way, is to try to keep interest rates stable and low so entrepreneurs can invest. today represents a terrible wasted opportunity. on the other side of this capitol this very morning, three democratic senators and three republican senators said they were ready to embrace a plan that begins by cutting spending $3 out of every $4. it cut social programs, would get us out of iraq and afghanistan, it would take a serious look out of social security and medicare and in many cases contributing to this deficit. and it would say that those who benefit from ethanol subsidies and oil company tax breaks, the wealthiest people in this country would have to pay a little bit more to pay their fair share. something like that is what
should be on the floor here this afternoon because it can pass, the president can sign it and it can solve the fiscal problems of this country or take us in the right direction. but we don't have something like that. instead we have a plan that says the following and puts it in the constitution, the guy who runs an ethanol company who gets massive public subsidies can make profits is completely left alone. he doesn't have to do anything. but for the woman who cleans his office at night is going to have to pay more to go to college, more for health care for herself, her children and her parents and more for just about anything she wants in her life. there's something wrong with that picture. sacrifice that is broadly shared is needed in this country but a blind adherence to a special chance of americans who are so powerful
and so entitled they pay nothing is the wrong way to go. and the last thing in the world we ought to do is put that in the united states. vote no on this travesty. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman. the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: madam speaker, at any we'd love to see the democrats' plan. you can slide it across the table. i yield two minutes to the gentleman from kansas, mr. huelskamp. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from kansas is recognized for two minutes. mr. huelskamp: a day like this doesn't come too often. there cannot be a better or more urgent time for this house and the senate in the united states of america to pass a constitutional amendment to balance a budget. in the matter of only two years, nondefense discretionary spending has increased 84%, annual deficits have exceeded $1 trillion for three straight
years. and our debt has grown by nearly $4 trillion since president obama took office. let us think about cut, cap and balance in a larger context. let's think about who is really impacted by the out-of-control spending this legislation seeks to end. in my home county of meade county, kansas, population 4,575, there was one birth announcement this week. the child received an i.o.u. for nearly $46,000 to the federal government. and that's before this president adds more to the country's debt burden. any request to increase the country's debt must be accompanied by a clear plan that will reduce the amount of money that a child born in meade county, kansas, ose to the politicians in -- owes to the politicians in washington, d.c. let's cut spending now, cap spending in the future and pass a balanced budget amendment and make history for all america's
children. it is the right thing to do. i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. as part of the plan the president's put on the table that would reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over about 10, 12 years, he has about $1 trillion in cuts in discretionary spending, he does ask the pentagon, which is one agency, the one agency that has never passed a g.a.o. audit, to help contribute toward resolving that deficit problem. and he also does it without making deep cuts in critical investments for our country. like education, like investment in infrastructure. we're going to see in a couple weeks a bill that may come out of the transportation committee that dramatically slash -- i'm happy to yield on your time -- that slashes infrastructure investments.
at a time we have 20% unemployment in the construction industry. so, yes, we have to make these cuts. the president's plan makes the cuts. but let's not take a hatchette to education investments. -- hatchet to education investments. let's not enshrine in the constitution of thes a preference for cutting medicare and social security -- of the united states a preference for cutting medicare and social security. that's what this provision will do. with that i'm going to yield three minutes to the distinguished vice chairman of the democratic caucus, mr. becerra. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for three minutes. mr. becerra: i thank the gentleman for yielding. once again, the public is way ahead of the politicians. by nearly 3-1, americans reject this republican budget scheme. in fact, nearly 70% of americans disapprove of how republicans are handling this deficit and default crisis.
even 51% of americans who are registered republicans disapprove of how house republicans are handling these negotiations. and by wide margins, americans have sent a very clear signal to us in congress here. do not cut medicare. do not cut medicare. i will repeat again, to pay for deficites that were caused by things like the bush tax cuts to the wealthy and two unpaid for wars in iraq and afghanistan. today, americans are living through tight budgets. as they sit at the kitchen table, they don't have the luxury of walking away from the tough choices as some in congress have done. they know that they must balance today the needs that they have with the investments of tomorrow. that's why americans would see straight through this cut and pay budget scheme. under this budget scheme if an american family wanted to buy a
house, guess what, you better have cash to pay for it because you cannot borrow if you have to live under this budget scheme. no mortgages. if you want to send your child to college, you better have every single cent you need to send your child to college today to pay for the full cost of that tuition. no student loans because you could not borrow. so much for the american dream for the american people. 200 days into this congress and not one bill yet from this house enacted to put americans back to work, and this proposal would eliminate hundreds of thousands of jobs almost immediately. how are we going to get past the next 14 days if today on this floor we're debating a bill that we know will not pass in the senate, that the president has said he would veto and in 14 short days it's not an issue of paying our bills. it's a matter of watching the interest rate on people's mortgages skyrocket. it's a matter of watching the
value of the dollar plummet. it's a matter of watching people's retirement accounts in their 401-k's or i.r.a.'s drop simply because people here in the house of representatives decided to play politics. that's what this is about. and that's why once again the public is way ahead of the politicses. let's get to work. let's stop leading the negotiating -- leaving the negotiating table. let's get this done. the president is willing to about with a balanced approach. this gets us nowhere. we need to go somewhere because america still has a long way to travel. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: it's always compelling, mr. speaker, when they have to use a poll to figure out how to do public policymaking and to suggest there would be no more mortgages is a fantasy. it's amazing what gets made up in this discussion instead of a serious discussion about balancing our books. now like to recognize the gentleman from south carolina, mr. mulvaney, for two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from south carolina. mr. mulvaney: thank you, mr. speaker. i can't tell you how much i long for a discussion of ideas,
an honest and open discussion of real ideas in this chamber as opposed to talking points. clearly we are not getting that here this evening. what we heard so far is this bill will dismantle medicaid -- excuse me -- medicare. i ask my colleagues across the aisle to read the bill. page 4 says we don't cut medicare with this bill. for the president to say the social security checks will not go out on august 3, that's just false. the president has every legal authority and the money available to him to send those checks out if he wants to. those checks will go out on august 3. we heard the country will default on our debt if we don't raise the debt ceiling. not true. not true. the authority is there. the money is there. we have enough money to pay the interest on our debt. we will not default. we heard the president say he will cut $4 trillion from spending. he admits that the spending cuts from $2 billion. the president admits only $2 billion is this year. what we heard from our
colleagues on the other side, mr. speaker, is duck, dodge and dismantle which i think is somewhat ironic it was "the washington post" who actually accused the president in those exact same words of ducking his obligations with this 2012 budget. talk about dodging responsibilities. it's now 811 days since our colleagues in the senate controlled by the democrats have introduced any -- balanced any budget whatsoever. if we talk about dismantling, replacing medicare as we know it, which is exactly what happened, the medicare we have known it for decades is gone and is replaced, dismantled and replaced with an independent advisory board. mr. speaker, i look forward to real debates on real issues. i look forward to having conversations in this chamber that is similar to the conversations that take place in every household, every business, every county, town, city, state in this country of what our priorities are and how to spend money responsibly. we are not going to have that
conversation in in chamber until we pass cut, cap and balance. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. i think the american families gather around their tables don't have the option of not paying their bills on obligations they've already occurred. they can't say, oh, it's ok to not pay my car payment but i'll pay my mortgage. they don't have that choice and frankly the united states government shouldn't be sayinging that we're going to make those choices. we should be paying all our bills and i would remind my colleagues that the reason we have to raise the debt creel something for obligations that have already -- ceiling is for obligations that have already occurred, votes that have already been taken, two wars, an unfunded prescription drug bill and the reality of two tax cuts that disproportionately benefited the very wealthy. now, i would urge my colleagues to read the bill, the section the gentleman referred to dealt with the sequestration, there's
nothing in the bill that says not to cut medicare or social security as part of reaching those targets. in fact, they're going to implant in the constitution of the united states a spending level that we have not achieved since just after we passed medicare. and so what they would do through this is call for deep cuts in medicare, the numbers in this particular statutory provision track the budget that the republicans passed off this floor, the c.b.o. analyzed that and looked at the impact on medicare beneficiaries and it's in a letter dated april 5, 2011, to the chairman of the budget committee pointing out that under the republican budget plan medicare beneficiaries will end up paying about 60% of the costs compared to 25% to 30% under medicare today.
it's interesting that members of congress have written into the statute provisions that say, for members of congress we will have about 72% to 75% of our premiums and costs covered when we're saying to seniors on medicare, let's put in these spending caps that will require you to pay a whole lot more. and with that i yield three minutes to the distinguished member of the budget committee, mr. ryan. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from ohio. mr. ryan: i thank the gentleman and i'd also like to thank our ranking member for carrying the flag here on our side and combating some of the misinformation that's coming out from the other side and i know the other side certainly feels the same way. but it's not the president saying all these things are going to happen if we do not address this issue, it's every economist on the planet except
for a few that may get paid by somebody who wants them to come up with another solution or another answer. so to pin this all on the president, to say that he's somehow hyping this i think is not exactly true. and i think what the american people are saying -- seeing and what we're seeing now is that as we come to the end, as we get close to a solution to this problem, the house republican caucus says, wait we got a solution, let's change the constitution. that is not a sincere effort to try to address this problem. we have had people negotiating this day in and day out and to come in within days of us, you know, destabilizing the markets and say our solution is to change the constitution of the united states i think is inadequate. and i heard several members get up and talk about this debt and the last couple of years and everything else.
completely ignoring the fact that our economy collapsed just two years ago. just two years ago the economy completely collapsed and collapsed in part because of the recklessness and the deregulation of wall street, taking the cops off the beat and letting all of this financial machinations continue to happen without any regulation at all. so to put up a placard that says we need to reduce regulations on wall street is a recipe to implement the same policies that got us in trouble in the first place. and lastly i would just like to say i know this is called a balanced budget amendment but the one thing that is not included is balance. when you look at the last 30 years and you look at the accumulation of wealth that went from the middle class, wages being stagnant over 30 years and the fact that in the late 1970's the top 1% of people in the country, top 1% of is the
wealthiest had 9% of real income in the late 1970's, the top 1% now has 25% of real income in the country, the average c.e.o. in the late 1960's made $48 for every $1 the worker made. today it's $ 80 and to try to put -- it's $280 and to try to put into the constitution of the united states an additional hurdle to try to ask those people who have benefited so greatly for being born in america and for generating wealth in america and having a court system and a military and transportation system available to them to make it harder to ask them to contribute to solve some of these problems i think is a real problem because at the same time you're making it easier with your g.d.p. number of 18% to cut medicare and to cut those programs that are investments here in the united states, that keep this great system going. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: mr. speaker, all we ask for is balanced budget
amendment. all we ask for is for people to live within their means. if you listen to the democrats and what they suggest, just go ahead and spend more, go ahead and keep racking it up on the credit card, there are no consequences. there are consequences. i will not. i'm going to now yield two minutes to the gentleman from indiana, mr. stutzman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana. mr. stutzman: thank you, mr. speaker, and i thank the gentleman from utah for yielding. washington is broke, mr. speaker, and the american people know it. and they know how to get out of a mess that we're in. i'd like to reference back to august of 2009. the president visited my district in northern indiana, was visiting the county of elkheart, the city of elk heart, indiana, and during that press conference he unleashed some very interesting statements and a brave constituent of mine, scott ferguson, expressed his disappointment with taxes and asked the president to explain how raising the taxes on anyone during a deep recession is going to help with the economy. obama responded, president obama responded, normally you don't
raise taxes in a recession which is why we haven't. and why we instead cut taxes. so i guess what i would say to scott is, his economics are right. and, mr. president, i would agree with that. today we're hearing from the democrats that we're paying for the bush tax cuts. well, i was elected last november but was here for two months when we voted to extend those bush tax cuts which now i would refer to them as the obama-bush tax cuts. so i think it's important that we remember who we should be really pointing the finger at, that we should be pointing it at washington, there's plenty of plame to go around. -- blame to go around. we have a broken business. it is time for new leadership to come in and evaluate the situation and what republicans are proposing today is that we're going to give ourselves some breathing room with a debt ceiling increase. but more importantly we are
going to show the banker that we're not going to continue to borrow and spend but we are going to change our spending habits and the way that we operate. if we want to kick the can down the road and say, we don't really -- we're not concerned about changing the way that we've operated, that's what the democrat proposal is. just raise the debt ceiling without any reforms to our current budget process. so i believe that this new leadership that we are seeing right here in this house is saying, we've got to stop kicking the can down the road, reform spending, reform washington. thank you, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. again, the president has said two things. number one, america pays its bills for the obligations that it's incurred. number two, he put a plan on the table to reduce the deficit by $4 trillion, again, 3 $-- $3 in spending cuts for $1 of revenue. i would point out to the gentleman, the president was very explicit.
he said that the revenue component would begin in january, 2013, and in the meantime he's actually proposed extending the payroll tax for another year during the year 2012 so that consumers would have more money, generate more demand in the economy which is very fragile right now. but make no mistake, our long-term challenge is getting the economy going again and reducing our deficit and the economy needs that to happen and it should happen in a balanced way. with that i yield two minutes to the gentleman from the ways and means committee, mr. neal. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. neal: i thank the gentleman. i rise in opposition to the cut, cap and balance ruse act. this is an ideologically extreme piece of legislation that will end medicare as we know it and it preserves tax cuts for the wealthiest americans. i guess some of our colleagues on the republican side when they're talking about balancing the budget, they've never heard of america paying its bills during world wars. we paid our bills through the
civil war. we paid our bills through the marshall plan. when america was extended as never before. the american people want a functional government. they want a responsible path forward and this is not the path that they're suggesting. a balanced budget constitutional amendment would straightjacket the federal government of the united states. i wonder how our tea party friends feel about a republican party disturbing the constitution to pay for george bush's tax cuts and recall the weapons of mass destruction, 31,000 wounded in iraq, that bill is due and we need to pay it. whether you are for iraq or against it, they served us honorably and that's what this debate is about. the war in afghanistan, we have to pay that bill whether we were for it or against it. $2.3 trillion worth of tax cuts while simultaneously invading
two countries. a prescription d medicare benefit that was never paid for. friends everywhere and i hope every speak that are comes to the microphone, including the gentleman from utah, answers the following question -- was the money borrowed along the way in a series of supplemental budgets to massacre aid the size of the expenditures -- masquerade the size of the expenditures they were requesting? the people who set the fire are now the ones calling the fire department. we're in debt because of the positions that they offered when bill clinton left. when clinton walked out the door there was ads 5.7 trillion surplus -- ads 5.7 trillion surplus -- $5.7 trillion surplus. we're here today because of the policies they embraced. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: i'd like to recognize the gentleman from new hampshire, mr. guinta, for two
minutes. mr. guinta: i find myself, you know, in an unfortunate position today representing new hampshire, listening to the constitution and the debate that we've had here in this house. this is a hallowed chamber, a place that i am honored to serve. honored to bring a responsibility to my constituents from new hampshire to in a dignified way communicate those feelings that are reflected by people in new hampshire. and i've sat here for the better part of two hours being ridiculed because my party has the will will -- willingness and ability to bring an idea to the floor of this house. now, i don't expect everybody, every member of this constitution -- institution to agree with the idea, but i would humbly ask that members of this institution recognize that there is an idea on the table.
cut, cap and balance act is an act not only that i support but i co-sponsored because i feel that america's in crisis. that my constituents from new hampshire feel new hampshire and america is in crisis because of the spending levels we find ourselves in. and it wasn't one party or the other, we got here holding hands over a long period of time. but now we have a responsibility as americans, not as members of party, but as americans to do something about this crisis. i will not go home and look my children in the eye and say that their father couldn't work with members of the other side of the aisle to solve america's problems. so today we are here to vote on cut, cap and balance, a measure that cuts spending immediately, that caps spending back to the
20% norms and brings a balanced budget amendment approach so the future of the solvency of this nation can be restored. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. and i agree with much of what the gentleman said, especially that we need to take responsibility for our own actions. . nobody should be taking the position we won't pay the bills of the united states america unless we get a plan that is 100% our way. american families captain say to one mortgage company, you know what? i don't like the way you are handling this. i'm not going to pay you or whatever. we need to take that same approach. decisions have been made in the past. we are obligated to pay the bills for those decisions. let's not try and duck those
responsibilities for our own actions. with that, i yield three minutes to the distinguished ranking member of the ways and means committee, mr. levin. mr. levin: in this bill, the republicans are trying to repeal the second half of the 20th century. we spent decades trying to knit a truly american fabric around a strengthened middle class. it holds at its core, retirement security, health care through medicare and medicaid and educational benefits to all through programs such aspell grants. for republicans, the purpose of this measure is to appeal to their base. but in so doing, they are debasing what we have built over the last half century. and it could not come at a worst
time for this country. republicans say they are dedicated to the markets, but they are essentially now saying financial markets be damned. as one analyst said yesterday, quote, the closer we get to the august deadline, the more anxious investors become, end of quote. one anonymous investor said, quote, i'm embarrassed to be a republican. these guys don't understand capital markets. this isn't about who wins an election. this is about whether people are going to be able to finance a home. it was 46 years ago this month that president johnson signed medicare into law. yet this measure doubles down on the ryan budget proposal that itself would end medicare. retirees would see at the very least, a 10% cut in their social
security plans. nursing home care, which makes up half of medicaid expenditures would be slashed. and that is not alone. the devastating cuts to endless programs, such as grants for higher education that have been vital in creating opportunity and building a strong american middle class. more than 14 million americans today remain jobless. instead of using their new house majority to pursue a jobs agenda, it has come to this. seven months after they assumed the majority, instead of promoting growth, encouraging job creation and reinforcing the economic recovery, republicans have been bringing about uncertainty. we must, indeed, confront the deficit, but not as the republicans now propose. tearing apart, tearing apart
what has helped create the fabric of the american middle class. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah. mr. chaffetz: mr. speaker, the president submitted a budget, a budget that never balances, but doubles and triples the debt. it went to the united states senate and 97 to nothing, not one democrat voted in favor of that. has the president submitted any amendment to that? no, he has not. the reality is this president has no plan. we can solve the underlying problem and take care of paying our bills on august 2. i recognize the gentleman from california, member of the budget committee, mr. mcclintock for two minutes. mr. mcclintock: this vote stands as a defining moment in this crisis. every rating agency has warned that an increase in the debt limit without a credible plan to balance the budget, will do
great damage to our nation's credit, and worse, fiscal experts warned that without such a plan, we risk a debt crisis within the next two years. this measure gives the president everything he has asked for, $2.4 trillion debt increase to pay for the bills that he and the congress have recklessly racked up but it calls for a constitutionally enforceable workout plan to place our nation back on the course to fiscal solvency, the balanced budget amendment that has been proposed in one form or another since the birth of our constitution and 49 other states have adopted. the gentleman from maryland reminds us that only a few of those 49 states have both a balanced budget requirement and 2/3 vote for tax increases. my home state of california happens to be one of them. california's deficits, as bad as theyr have been roughly half the size of those that the federal
government has run up in the same period. these budget protections work. maybe not perfectly, but they do work. and i might add that when california also had a real spending limit, as this measure calls for, california enjoid balanced budgets, prudent reserves, no tax increases and steady economic growth. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from vermont, mr. welch. mr. welch: we face two immediate challenges, the first is will we pay our bills. that's the whole issue of raising the deficit -- the debt limit. america pays its bills. it's as simple as that. if we owe veterans who serve this country, their benefits, they are going to get paid. if we went to a war and didn't pay for it, we have to pay that
bill when it becomes due. that is the question. it is not right and by the way, republican ronald reagan was the one who was familiar with tax and budget fights who said he would never make america's full faith and credit hostage to a point of view and did the right thing to pay those bills. the second issue that we face, and i acknowledge my republican colleagues for their focus on this is the long-term fiscal plan. the bill that we have brought before the floor raises the question, is it an effective tool or is the better approach a balanced approach to revenues and spending. the state of vermont does not have a balanced budget amendment, yet in vermont we pay our bills and balance our budget. we do it number one by working together. and one of the points that the rating agencies have made is the apprehension here is not so much our ability to pay our bills but
our ability to work together. working together requires that we have a balance of cuts. look at that budget, where can we save money? but it requires that we have a balance of revenues, because part of the goal here of a confident country is to grow our economy. that requires investment in infrastructure, in education, in new industries. and if we are going to be successful, this cannot be just cuts. it has to be balanced with investments that will grow this economy, grow jobs, bring the unemployment rate down. i see the gentleman from south carolina included in his approach cutting the pentagon. that has to be on the table. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new jersey, mr. garrett. mr. garrett: the gentleman from florida is recognized for one
minute. . >> i'm the guy with hair. mr. westmoreland: i rise in support of h.r. 2560, because when i look back in the few years -- mr. west: now we are at about 14.5 trillion in debt. from 2009, $1.29 trillion and estimated $1.65 trillion in deficits. 800 plus days the senate democrats have not passed a deficit. $1 trillion of wasteful spending. we still have unemployment at 9.2%. 16.2% in the black community and 13% of my brothers and sisters are coming back from combat zones are unemployed. our government spending to
g.d.p. ratio is 24.4%. 47% of our debt is owned by foreign nations. 27% with china. we are going in the wrong direction. i stand in support of h.r. 2560 because this is insanity and we cannot to do the same thing and expect different results. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland. january january i remind my colleagues the last time we were running a budget surplus was during the years of the clinton administration. during that period of time, our spending was at a level that was higher than would be limited by the limitation in here and we were paying our obligations. and what this would do is create an anti-democratic provision in the constitution that says you can't balance your budget at 19% of g.d.p., even if that's the will of the american people.
even if it's how we did it back during the clinton administration. and with that, mr. speaker, i would yield two minutes to the distinguished gentlelady, member of the budget committee, ms. wasserman schultz. ms. wasserman schultz: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in strong opposition to h.r. 2560, which attempts to manipulate the constitution in order to impose a ryan budget plan on steroids. this is yet another thinly valed attempt by our colleagues across the aisle to medicare while refusing to consider tax breaks for millionaires. it is crucial that the american people understand that this plan would require even deeper cuts than under the ryan republican plan we saw in april. this means deeper cuts in education, clean energy and increased costs for our seniors. president obama has vowed to veto this bill, which ends the medicare guarantee and the
gentleman from florida who represents thousands of medicare beneficiaries as do i, is supportive of this plan that would increase costs for medicare beneficiaries, unbelievable from a member from south florida. it slashes medicaid and critical investments essential to winning the future in favor of protecting tax breaks for bill oil, millionaires and companies who ship jobs overseas. the only way to achieve a real solution is through shared sacrifice. we can't ask our seniors, working americans and students to bear the burden of our deficits when we are asking nothing of corporations, special interests and the wealthiest few. incredibly, our friends across the aisle won't even put that on the table. the nonpartisan c.b.o., congressional budget office has said that the number one policy decision that brought us to the need to prevent the nation from defaulting on our debt for the first time in history, were the bush tax cuts in 2001 and 2003
that disproportionately benefited the wealthiest americans. we are here rewarding the most privileged at the expense of our working families and our seniors, the bedrock of our society. cap cut and balance might make a great soundbite but would have a devastating impact on our economy it is more like duck, dodge and dismantle. it is essential that we move beyond politics as usual take action to reduce our fation's deficit and get our fiscal house in order. on behalf of the medicare beneficiaries in my home strict and middle-class americans, i urge my colleagues to join me and pass a plan that engages us all in shared sacrifice to solve our nation's debt crisis. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from new jersey. mr. garrett: i rise in support
of a plan, an actual plan to address our fiscal crisis. cap, cut and balance. with our plan topping $14 trillion we have no other choice to send immediate signals to the marketplace and the world that we are serious about debt reform and we need to put skin in the game in the form of immediate spending caps today, spending tomorrow and the balanced budget amendment to keep us from spending too much in the future. i find it interesting that the proponents of a debt limit increase point to the financial meltdown type scenarios of failing to raise the debt limit by august 2. we here interest rates would skyrocket which would require borrow borrowing and disastrous consequences for the federal budget. you know what the other side fails to mention? what would happen if we don't get spending under control.
the challenge is clear. what are the solutions to it? house republicans today are demonstrating that we are committed to confronting our country's addiction to spending and debt with bold and decisive action and with a plan in place. cut, cap and balance plan is not only the right prescription to address our fiscal crisis, but the only plan on the table that makes structural changes to right our fiscal ship and the only plan in place. nobody wants to raise the debt ceiling, but if it's going to be raised, we should use it as what? an opportunity to implement comprehensive reform measures to make sure we are never in this situation again because if we do nothing, put off the tough decisions for another day, the only one to blame is ourselves. this is our moment. this is our time to act. and i thank the speaker. with this, i yield now two minutes to the gentleman from indiana. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana. .
>> thank you, mr. speaker. it's been very interesting listening to this debate so far. i want to add a couple points to it. i want to add for the record that this government is spending $7 million a minute. we are borrowing $3 million a minute of that $7 million. this is money that most americans will never see in a lifetime and we are spending that much in a minute. now, as i listen to the debate so far, i couldn't help but wonder, mr. speaker, what is this president, what are the democrats so very scared of? why are they scared of letting the balanced budget amendment go to the people of this country? let's be clear. voting for this bill starts a balanced budget amendment process. not the implementation of the amendment. so why are they so scared of the people of this country? well, if you believe that
government, if you believe that elites can make better decisions for the people of this country than the people can, if you believe that they should be controlling the people's money, their property, betser than the people can, well, no wonder they're scared. mr. rokita: because overwhelmingly the people of this country would say to us exactly what they say around the kitchen table and that is we have to live within our means. the second point, mr. speaker, and then i'll yield back, this is the fist time that i can tell -- first time that i can tell in the history of this republic that this kind of debt has been racked up with no intention and no plan to pay it back. this is the first time. and quite frankly i don't know of anything more piggish or un-american than racking up a big to be passed on to our best asset, our future, our kids, just so that we can have more on our pleat now. judgment -- plate now. just so we can have more largess, so we can be more selfish in the here and now and
kick that can down the road to let our kids pay for it. since when has that become part of american exceptionalism? since when has that attitude become part of this country? i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. i know that the gentleman is new to the body but there were lots of decisions made over the past years for which the bills are coming due now. for example, in 2005 when our republican colleagues headed up the house we passed a prescription drug add-on to medicare which was not funded, not one penny. it was all put on the credit card. two wars that were put on the credit card and again tax cuts in 2001, 2003 that disproportionately benefited the very wealthy that create this gap. so i agree with the gentleman, it is time to take
responsibility for our actions and it's interesting to hear some folks say that it's a sacrifice for us to have to pay bills for decisions that were made in the past. now, yes, we need to get the deficit under control and again the president of the united states has put on the table a balanced approach over 10 years, $3 in spending cuts to $1 in revenue and again our republican colleagues have walked away from the table because they don't want to raise one penny of revenue from closing corporate tax loopholes. just to be clear, the president's plan would extend middle class tax cuts beyond 2013. the president's plan would say, let's extend the payroll tax cut for 2012. but he says, let's get serious about our deficit and let's do it in a balanced way with shared responsibility. and with that i yield two
minutes to the gentleman from georgia, a member of the ways and means committee who knows a lot about the importance of shared responsibility, mr. lewis. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia. mr. lewis: mr. speaker, the american people are sick and tired of washington petty games. people's lives, their homes, their retirement, their health care are hanging in the balance. the american people are good, strong, resilient people. they're willing to sacrifice to get our country back on track but they will not be played as fools. middle class americans know they are not getting a fair shake. this bill protects tax breaks for the wealthiest americans while the middle class pay more than their fair share and watch their retirement savings disappear. the american people know that there is a deliberate, systemic
attempt to destroy medicare, to damage medicaid and threaten social security. this is ducking, dodging and destroying. if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck it must be a duck. the american people want one thing, they want jobs, good jobs , jobs that pay the bills, give people back their dignity and give people back on track -- get people back on track with the american dream. our nation deserves nothing less. but this bill would destroy those hopes and those dreams, it would plunge our economy back into a deeper recession. it would mean more lost jobs, more lost homes and seniors living in poverty without health care and basic necessity. it would mean children going hungry and it keeps smart, young
people from going off to college. this bill will sell the very soul of our nation. we are better than this, we are more compassionate than this. we know better, it is easy to destroy -- easier to destroy than it is to build. another generation of leaders gave more with -- did more with less and built people up. we cannot turn back, vote no on this bill, let's go back to the table and work out a compromise that prevents default, preserves our moral obligation to our seniors, puts america back on the road to greatness and with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. garrett: i yield now one minute to the gentlelady who is concerned not only about the soul of the nation today but the soul of the nation for our prosperity as well. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from michigan. mrs. miller: mr. speaker, after years of growing government and increasing spending beyond all
reason, it is now long past time to bring fiscal sanity to washington and to put america on a path to prosperity. and today, mr. speaker, our national debt has increased and it's exceeded now $14 trillion and our debt has increased by almost $4 trillion which is more than $120 billion a month in new debt just since president obama has been in office. $120 billion each and every month with this new president. government has grown so large that it now spends nearly 25% of our annual economic output. a level not seen since world war ii. that's crowded out of course private sector growth and new jobs and opportunities that americans need and are demanding. this plan puts forward real cuts to spending, no smoke, no mirrors. it enforces discipline with real caps on spending and a balanced budget amendment. and it gives the president the increase in the debt ceiling that he is seeking if the balanced budget amendment is
sent to the states. mr. speaker, i would urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this commonsense reform. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. before recognizing the gentleman from maryland, the chair would just advise that somehow the time got out of whack. for time management purposes, the majority has one hour and 24 minutes and the minority has 59 minutes. for budgeting purposes. the chair would recognize the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: with that, mr. speaker, i would suggest that our republican colleagues go next, if that's all right. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey. mr. garrett: at this time i will yield one minute to the gentleman from north carolina. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from north carolina, mr. coble. mr. coble: mr. speaker, many members in recent sessions of congress have not been known as practitioners for fiscal discipline.
balanced budget amendment philosophy has well searched thousands of governmentalent -- served thousands of governmental entities and thousands of households. now is the time for the congress to embrace a balanced budget amendment which will set us upon a course where fiscal discipline is not merely an option but a necessity. only then, mr. speaker, will the congress balance its own budget. i urge support of this worthwhile and commonsense piece of legislation and would like to see it enacted although that probably will not be the conclusion. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from maryland continue to reserve? mr. van hollen: yes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey. mr. garrett: the gentleman from texas is recognized for one minute to speak on this commonsense piece of legislation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas.
>> i thank my colleague from new jersey for the time. mr. speaker, there are two reasons why this is the most important vote of my 2 1/2 years in congress. their names are cate and grant olson. they are my children. mr. olson: cate is 14 and grant is 11. and my wife, nancey, and i uprooted them from the only home they knew to move back to my home state of texas to run for congress because we were worried that the ever-increasing federal debt was the greatest threat to their future. today for the first time in my children's young lives the house of representatives is passing game-changing legislation that puts our nation on a path to fiscal sanity and ensures that my cate, migrant, your cate and your grant have better lives than we did.
i urge, urge my colleagues to make a down payment on the future of america and vote in support of h.r. 2560. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. i would just ask my republican colleagues to consider why they want to write a provision into the constitution of the united states that would make it harder to shut down a special interest tax loophole for the purpose of reducing the deficit for our children and grandchildren and now i would yield four minutes to our very distinguished democratic whip and my colleague from the state of maryland, mr. hoyer. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland. mr. hoyer: i thank my friend, the ranking member of the budget committee, mr. van hollen, for yielding. the american public are rightfully very distressed with the congress of the united
states. they're distressed that a time of great challenge and great risk thank, that we fiddle while the debt threatens -- risk, that we fiddle while the debt threatens to burn us, to place our country in the position of being adjudged uncredit worthy. that is not worthy of this congress or any one of us that serves in this congress. we have 14 days according to the secretary of treasury until such time as america will be unable to pay its obligations. whether to foreigners or to people in this country. that is not a situation that will be looked at positively by the financial sector or by any one of our constituents whose ability to save, to have a 401-k
that is stable, to purchase an automobile or a refrigerator or send their kid to college will be put at risk because of increased interest rates, not one of us will be held harmless if this congress fails to do its duty. now, ladies and gentlemen, we have had a number of efforts to get us to where we needed to be, to get back to fiscal responsibility. i'm i amused when our -- i'm amused when i hear our new members talk about the fiscal irresponsibility because i've served here long enough to know that the two presidents under who the debt was raised most were ronald reagan, 186% increase from the $985 billion total debt when ronald reagan took office to over $2.8 trillion, and george bush the second who increased the
national debt 86%. did he do it alone? of course not. did we all do it? republicans and democrats? yes. now, democrats believe that the debt was raised because we bought things on the republican watch that were not paid for. that's indisputable. you cannot argue that. those are the facts. the fact is did we do the same in the obama administration? we did. why? because we had to respond to the deepest recession we have seen, we didn't create enough jobs, in fact we lost jobs. so we bring a bill to the floor some weeks ago to address the credit worthiness of the united states of america. . and the chairman of the ways and means committee said we offer this to fail. not to solve the problem, to fail. we bring a bill on the floor of the house of representatives, 14
days before the debt limit is reached and america might default for the first time in history, this bill was written sometime late friday or perhaps saturday. how many of you said, have you read the bill? how many hours have you taken to consider this bill? i have read the bill, too, paul. i guarantee there is not an american who is not on the budget committee who reads this bill knows what impact it has and the chairman of the budget committee is shaking his head and agreeing with me. you haven't had one second of hearing on this, there was no markup on this bill and it has significant consequences. let me tell you, my friends on the other side of the aisle, i stand in this well who voted for the balanced budget amendment in 1995 -- could i have one additional minute. the speaker pro tempore: one
additional minute. mr. hoyer: i voted to get to fiscal responsibility and balanced the budget four years in a row and president bush inherited $5.6 trillion surplus, not debt, deficit and jobs having been created before he took office. eight years later, we increase the debt by $5 trillion. now i'm not going to vote for the balanced budget amendment and i urge my colleagues to reject this bill, which has no chance of passage and we need to stop fiddling and need to do our work and make sure that america can pay its debt, because if it can't, every one of our constituents will lose and our country will lose. our oath of office was to preserve and protect. defeat this ill-advised,
ill-timed, unconsidered piece of legislation and let us move to fiscal responsibility in a way that will bring us all together in a bipartisan way as biden tried to do and as frankly, mr. boehner and the president tried to do. let's get to that objective. the country deserves it. the speaker pro tempore: members are reminded to address their remarks to the chair and not to others in the first or second person. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. garrett: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from georgia, who recognized that if the balanced budget amendment was appropriate back in 1995 with debt reaching $14 trillion how much more so is it relevant to pass today. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. graves: we are at the moment
of choosing and we just heard from the former leader of the former majority party that we need to oppose this. but you know, to those in the gallery here today, to those watching on camera, just in a few hours, you will get the opportunity to see behind me on this board every name of every member of congress in how they vote. they will make a choice. they will take their voting card of which you have entrusted us with and make a decision, this nation should balance its budget or not. this isn't so much of cut, cap, balance, but about prosperity or continued high unemployment. that would be green for prosperity, red for unemployment. this is about accountability and constraints, green, or washington run wild. again that's correct would be the red button, and the status
quo. this is about sustainability of our future or continued uncertainty as we have seen thus far, or better yet, this is about standing on our own, the green button, independent of this great nation or continued and increasing bondage of foreign nations in our indebtedness, again, the red button. members of congress, this is your time of choosing. we have heard so many names today, former presidents, members of other congresses, but guess what? this is your time, this is your choice, this is your voting card, what will you choose? a prosperous future for this nation or a continuation of the status quo? i urge my members, let's choose a great, prosperous future for this nation. america deserves it. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. members are reminded to address
their remarks to the chair and inappropriate to address people in the gallery. the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: this is a time for choosing. we have to reduce our deficit. we have to get the budget into balance. the question is, how we do this. and we believe that it is a corruption of the constitution to write into the constitution itself a provision that says a majority vote can cut medicare and social security, but you need a 2/3 undemocratic vote to close the corporate tax loophole for the purpose of reducing the deficit. i yield one minute to the gentlelady from california, ms. lee. the speaker pro tempore: ms. lee. ms. lee: i thank the gentleman for his yielding. i rise in strong opposition to what has been appropriately labeled as the duck, dodge and dismantle. republicans are requiring us to
amend our constitution before we consider actually avoid default. america fails to pay its bills on time. the republicans dodge facing the real challenge funding two wars and other republican interests. and the republicans want to dismantle our nation's economic security for seniors, the disabled and the poor by cutting medicare, medicaid and social security. making heartless cuts on the backs of the most vulnerable will not balance the budget and it's morally wrong. now with only 14 days left, republicans are pushing forward legislation that will guarantee a default and will kill hundreds of thousands of jobs. this duck, dodge and dismantle bill will kill jobs and set our nation back rather than move it forward. i urge my colleagues to oppose this bill that this bill would be written in stone, mind youu in our constitution and turn the
american dream into a nightmare. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. garrett: and just to remind the other side of the aisle that with regard to the radical plan that we talk about here with regard to changing our amending the constitution, it was thomas jefferson who said in a letter to john taylor, i wish it were possible to obtain a single amendment to our constitution. i would be willing to depend on that alone that our government would return to the genuine principles of the constitution and he was speaking of what we are doing today that thomas jefferson wished we had done over 200 years ago, a balanced budget amendment. i yield two minutes to the gentlelady from washington. mr. rogers: i rise in support of this -- mrs. mcmorris rodgers: i rise in support of this bill.
the rising national debt was a sign of leadership's failure. today president obama is asking congress to raise the national debt $2.4 trillion, largely to fund many of the programs that he had passed in the last couple of years. and to put that into perspective that amounts to $20,000 for every american family. congress is being asked to add $20,000 in debt burden to every american family and we owe it to them to make sure we are cutting up the credit cards and not going to continue to spend beyond our means. house republicans are committed to getting our fiscal house in order. house republicans are committed to protecting our excellent credit rating. it is the national debt that threatens our credit rating. the bill before us today, cut, cap and balance is a credible plan to address this situation
and will cut spending immediately and enact spending caps and require the passage of a balanced budget amendment. 49 out of 50 states balance their budget. the president's spend, borrow, bailout policies have cleerled failed and i urge my colleagues to support this legislation. let's help america's economy today and let's keep the american dream alive for many years to come. and with that, i yield become. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland. mr. van hollen: thank you, mr. speaker. i would hazard a guess that thomas jefferson would not want to write into the constitution of the united states anti-democratic provisions that said, you need 2/3 in order to close special interest tax loopholes for the purpose of deficit reduction or to say we are going to decide now for all time that we have to balance our budget at 18% at g.d.p. rather than at the will of the american people.
how is the time currently allocated? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey has 17 1/2 minutes with an additional hour. and the gentleman from maryland, 51 1/2 minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey, mr. garrett. mr. garrett: i yield one minute to the the gentlewoman from the gentleman from minnesota. mr. kline: i rise in strong support of h.r. 2560, cut, cap and balance act. the severity of our nation's fiscal crisis cannot be overstated. more than 14 million americans are looking for work. meanwhile federal spending continues at an unprecedented pace with an average of $4 billion added to our country's debt every day.
we need to encourage economic growth and investment. instead, leaders on the other side of the aisle are pushing reckless policies, more red tape and taxes to pay for their irresponsible spending spree leaving job creators frozen by uncertainty and fear and risk our future prosperity. at a recent round table, a small business owner told me, quote, the government is out of control, it's too big and i don't like it, closed quote. well, i don't like it either and it's costing our country jobs. it's time for washington to do what's right. we need to make the tough choices necessary to get our nation's fiscal house in order. no one said it would be easy, but it is certainly necessary. the legislation before us will end unsustainable spending and put this nation back on a fiscal path. i urge my colleagues to support it. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from maryland continue to reserve? mr. van hollen: i reserve.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey. mr. garrett: regarding what sort of amendment that thomas jefferson may have been looking for today whether we would be looking for in what we call a super majority or what have you, jefferson would be going even further than what we are doing here today and say that congress should not have the ability to borrow at all. the amendment we are putting forward would give us greater flexibility in time of emergency, in time of war, that congress can take it upon themselves to borrow. jefferson understood that congress, just like the businesses and families at the time needed to live within their means and he saw it as i am moral to take a responsibility of this generation and place it on future generations. with that, i will yield two minutes to the gentleman from arkansas. the chair: the gentleman from arkansas.
mr. womack: i have had the pleasure of representing arkansas' third district and i can still hear the voices of those people who sent me here. they said, steve, you have to go to washington and you have to cut spending. you have to empower the private sector. you have to reduce the size of government. you have to get to washington and help put us back to work. those same conversations at home at the kitchen table, people discussing their personal budgets, saying to me that i have to live within my means, why doesn't washington? mr. speaker, to each of these comments, i say we have an answer. it's a trifecta, if you will called cut, cap and balance. i realize i have been here a short time but i know full well how washington works and i know that this concept is forei